US using issue of chemical weapons to launch war: Syria FM
Iran Press TV
Mon Sep 9, 2013 4:6PM GMT
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem has accused the US of using the issue of chemical weapons as a 'pretext' to launch a war against his country.
He said any US military strike against Syria would jeopardize the Geneva 2 conference aimed at finding a political solution to the ongoing crisis in the Arab country.
Muallem made the remarks on Monday in Moscow following talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.
The top Syrian diplomat also stated that Damascus is ready 'for dialogue with all political forces who favor reestablishing peace in our country.' He, however, warned that the position would change if military strikes took place.
Lavrov, for his part, said US military strike on Syria would lead to an 'outburst' of terrorism both in Syria and in neighboring countries, adding that the possibility of finding a political solution still remains.
Washington is struggling to secure support for military action against Syria over the accusation that the Syrian government was involved in a deadly chemical attack near Damascus on August 21.
The White House has admitted it has no 'irrefutable' evidence of Syrian government's use of chemical weapons, but said a 'strong common-sense test irrespective of the intelligence' suggested the Syrian army was responsible for the August poison gas attack.
The US Senate will vote on authorizing military intervention in Syria later this week.
Meanwhile, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has warned of massive retaliation if the United States launches a military strike against his country.
Assad told CBS Television on Monday that Washington should 'expect everything' if US forces attack his country.
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