France warns Syria over chemical weapons

2012-12-04 19:00

Paris - France on Tuesday joined the United States and Nato in delivering a blunt warning to Damascus not to use chemical weapons on rebels, warning that the international community would react if it did.

"Any use of these chemical weapons by [Syrian President Bashar] Assad would be unacceptable," foreign ministry spokesperson Vincent Floreani told reporters.

"The leaders in Damascus must know the international community is watching them and will react" if they are used, he said, adding that France was in contact with its partners to "prevent any use of these arms should the regime or anyone else be tempted".

US President Barack Obama on Monday told Assad not to use chemical weapons against his own people, in a new warning as the conflict approaches the 21-month mark with more than 41 000 people killed.

The Syrian government, fighting to prevent the capital Damascus from falling to rebel forces, reiterated on Monday that it would never resort to chemical weapons.

But a US official said Syria had begun mixing chemicals that could be used to make sarin, a deadly nerve agent, while CNN reported Damascus could use the gas in a limited artillery attack on advancing rebels.

Washington fears that battlefield advances by rebels could prompt Assad to use chemical arms, or that such stocks could become insecure or find their way into the hands of groups hostile to the United States and its allies.

Nato on Tuesday joined Washington in delivering a blunt warning to Damascus against the use of chemical weapons, as the alliance readied to approve a Turkish request for missiles to protect its border with Syria.

  • AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-12-04 19:30

    . This assad MONSTER must be stopped!!!! To heck with these Russian bastards and slimy Chinese, AND all these half baked loonies from the violent left.

  • diana.gill.18 - 2012-12-05 08:48

    Froggies always have been known as sh@t-stirres since the very beginning of their Great revolution. They should stay away from any international conflict and concentrate on what is going in their own country which economy is not in its best position. Though they deserve some strong credits for voting in Palestinians' favor recently. The same time if they are so much concerned about usage of chemical weapons in Syria why those human rights watchdogs didnt help to investigate the illegal arms deal between the Israeli and American governments. Or they live by the principle Lets join the majority so they can score more likes then dislikes on Facebook?

  • venus.nakesch - 2012-12-05 12:10

    with the use of the chemical weapons might end up WWIII because it won't only involve neighboring countries such as Iran, Saudi Arabia but the west as well. we've all seen what occur when the west is involve in countries' domestic affairs, chaos and destruction only stand for such for instance in Africa and Middle East. therefore, Mr president you better follow what you've been told, do not be vainglorious,we're watching you!

  • arnaud.munezero - 2012-12-05 12:36

    Please Nato please all International community choose the best foreign policy instrument to be used in the Syrian conflict resolution, please don't put again the world in hegemonic war like the second world war. Never again we need peace, prosperity and unity.

      bradley.kecskes - 2012-12-05 14:47

      Fair enough but world populations are growing...its mans way of culling....WAR, It never changes.

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