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

Multimedia Obama Defends Immigration Action

Obama says with his executive action on immigration, enforcement resources will be focused on 'felons, not families; criminals, not children' More

US-Led Airstrikes in Syria Kill Over 900: Monitoring Group

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the toll includes more than 50 civilians, five of them women and eight of them children More

Report: Obama Broadens US Combat Role in Afghanistan

The New York Times says resident Barack Obama has signed a classified order extending the role of US troops in Afghanistan for another year 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.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid