Global Security Newswire
Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues
Obama Demands Russia Hold Syria to Account on Chemicals
President Obama on Tuesday demanded Russian action in pushing Syria to fulfill its pledges on relinquishing its chemical arsenal, RIA Novosti reports.
"Syria must meet its commitments, and Russia has a responsibility to ensure that Syria complies," Obama told journalists in Washington.
President Bashar Assad's government admitted possessing chemical weapons and agreed to give them up several weeks after sarin nerve agent allegedly killed more than 1,400 people on the edge of Damascus. Russia, a backer of Assad's regime, has supported the regime's denials of responsibility for the chemical strike in rebel-occupied territory.
Washington recently accused the Syrian government of dragging its feet in the disarmament effort, which last week missed a deadline for moving most of the chemical-warfare stocks onto foreign vessels for removal and destruction. Damascus has blamed delays on the dangerous nature of shipping the materials across territory ravaged by nearly three years of civil war. Still, Syrian and Russian officials have suggested an end-of-June deadline remains within reach for the stockpile's full destruction.
A key international official on Tuesday said Assad's government is demonstrating "constructive cooperation" in the disarmament effort, and voiced confidence that the mid-year goal "will be met," Agence France-Presse reported.
"What's important ... is that there is an acceleration and intensification of efforts as we progress in time towards the deadline," said Sigrid Kaag, special coordinator of the international disarmament operation overseen by the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.
Meanwhile, Obama said Washington has not ruled out the option of attacking Syrian government targets.
"Right now we don't think that there is a military solution per se to the problem, but the situation is fluid and we are continuing to explore every possible avenue to solve this problem," he said.
The potential for the United States to employ armed force in Syria became widely discussed immediately following the Aug. 21 chemical strike in the Syrian capital's Ghouta suburbs.
May 23, 2014
The UNSCR 1540 Resource Collection examines implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540, which requires all states to implement measures aimed at preventing non-state actors from acquiring NBC weapons, related materials, and their means of delivery. It details implementation efforts in all of the regions and countries of the world to-date.
Oct. 31, 2013
This CNS issue brief examines the lessons learned from dismantling Libya and Iraq's chemical weapons programs and what these two cases presage for disarmament in Syria. In particular, this article explores the challenges relating to ensuring material and physical security for both inspectors and the chemical weapons stockpile itself; verifying the accuracy and completeness of disclosed inventories; and developing effective monitoring and verification regimes for the long-term. The conclusion examines recommendations stemming from this analysis.
This article provides an overview of Syria's historical and current policies relating to nuclear, chemical, biological and missile proliferation.