News / Middle East

UN to Launch Syria Chemical Weapons Probe

A citizen journalism image provided by Aleppo Media Center, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows black smoke rising from buildings due to government forces shelling, in Aleppo, Syria, March 19, 2013.A citizen journalism image provided by Aleppo Media Center, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows black smoke rising from buildings due to government forces shelling, in Aleppo, Syria, March 19, 2013.
x
A citizen journalism image provided by Aleppo Media Center, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows black smoke rising from buildings due to government forces shelling, in Aleppo, Syria, March 19, 2013.
A citizen journalism image provided by Aleppo Media Center, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows black smoke rising from buildings due to government forces shelling, in Aleppo, Syria, March 19, 2013.
Margaret Besheer
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon announced Thursday he will send a mission to Syria to investigate allegations of chemical weapons use.

At a hastily-called news conference, Ban said that if chemical weapons have been used, it would constitute an “outrageous crime.” He said he plans to dispatch investigators as soon as possible.

The Syrian government on Wednesday asked Ban to establish an independent inquiry into government claims that rebels conducted a chemical weapons' attack in the province of Aleppo on Tuesday.

“The investigation mission is to look into the specific incident brought to my attention by the Syrian government," said Ban. "I am of course aware that there are other allegations of similar cases involving the reported use of chemical weapons.”

The other cases he refers to would include opposition claims that Syrian government forces carried out chemical weapons' attacks both in the Aleppo area and in Damascus.

Western countries said Wednesday they would ask the U.N. chief to look into these cases as well.

Rebels say Assad forces were responsible for an attack in the northwest part of Aleppo that killed more than 20 people and wounded another 80.

U.S. President Barack Obama said the United States also will investigate thoroughly reports of chemical weapons use in Syria.

Broad investigation

Ban said his investigators would receive support and cooperation from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the World Health Organization. He urged all parties in Syria to cooperate with the mission, including giving unfettered access to investigators.

"Again, my announcement should serve as an unequivocal reminder that the use of chemical weapons is a crime against humanity," he said. "The international community needs full assurance that chemical weapons stockpiles are verifiably safeguarded.”

Ban said he has emphasized repeatedly to the Syrian government that it holds primary responsibility for ensuring the safety and security of any such weapons or materials.

Syria has never confirmed that it possesses chemical weapons, but has said if it does have them it would only use them if attacked by a foreign aggressor and not against its own people.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: kanaikaalirumporai
March 21, 2013 9:53 PM
Yet another dram to be setup by this man, who will throwaway the reporte, if there is going to be one, and the US will again face humiliation at the hands of Assad's friends like Russians and the Chinese along with others like the so called progressive and developing bloc of countries, like the one done today on similar evil Sri Lanka. US is gradually losing it's hold on world affairs nowadays, due to economic crisis both at home and among it's allies, while countries like China and Russia, where some 20 years agao hungry people were forced to lick the starch out of wall posters now taliking about bailing out Eu states economically.

In Response

by: bluesquid from: Vancouver
March 22, 2013 12:34 AM
The USA has lost hold on world affairs by the crimes they commit and lack of ethics, don’t blame Russia or china for it. Greed, racism, lack of respect of human rights, torture, flying jails, lies, deception, malevolent covert operations among other crimes did it.


by: angelina from: las vegas
March 21, 2013 5:25 PM
When UN will launch america chemicals lethal weapons bombs probe ?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid