Chemical weapons | South China Morning Post
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  • Jan 26, 2015
  • Updated: 3:13pm

Chemical weapons

Let Syrians decide their fate

US President Barack Obama. Photo: AP

US President Barack Obama has succumbed to pressure to get his country directly involved in Syria's civil war. He has decided to arm the rebels, using as justification a belief that Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad's government has deployed chemical weapons against the fighters trying to overthrow the regime. The US is also considering imposing a no-fly zone, which, if approved, would be its first direct military intervention in the conflict. A worrying path has been embarked upon that offers no solution to a dispute that Syrians, not outsiders, should decide.

Monday, 17 June, 2013, 4:23am 1 comment

US mulls no-fly zone after ‘Syria crossed red line’

A rebel fighter holds a rocket in the metal workshop in Aleppo province where it was made. Photo: NYT

The United States is considering imposing a no-fly zone in Syria, its first direct military intervention in the two-year-old civil war, Western diplomats revealed yesterday after the White House said Syria had crossed a "red line" by using nerve gas.

15 Jun 2013 - 4:43am

France and Britain confirm use of sarin nerve gas in Syria

"Homs is bleeding" says a message on a wall in Raqqa province, east Syria. Photo: Reuters

France said on Tuesday it has confirmed that the nerve gas sarin was used “multiple times and in a localised way” in Syria, including at least once by the regime. It was the most specific claim by any Western power about chemical weapons attacks in the 27-month-old conflict.

Britain later said that tests it conducted on samples taken from Syria also were positive for sarin.

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

France tests Syrian samples for suspected chemical weapon elements

France is testing samples of suspected chemical weapon elements used against Syrian rebel fighters and smuggled out by reporters from Le Monde newspaper and will divulge the results in the next few days, a senior French official says.

29 May 2013 - 3:17am

France mulls action with partners over Syrian use of chemical arms

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. Photo: Xinhua

France is consulting its partners over how to respond to growing proof of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, says French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. "There is increasingly strong evidence of localised use of chemical weapons," Fabius said yesterday at a meeting of European Union foreign ministers. "That must all be verified, we are doing that with other partners.

28 May 2013 - 2:47am

Letters to the Editor, April 30, 2013

Sita Chan who died in a car accident. Photo: SCMP

For chemical weapons read weapons of mass destruction. Western powers shall intervene in Syria, create another failed state that will become another fundamentalist justification for the global "war on terror" and then blame faulty intelligence that was accepted "in good faith".

30 Apr 2013 - 5:35am 1 comment

Syria dismisses US, UK chemical weapons claims as lie

Smoke rising after heavy shelling in Houla in Syria's Homs province. Photo: AFP

The 46-year-old, one of the European Union’s youngest prime ministers, is then expected to unveil his programme in a parliamentary session on Monday, before the government is put to a confidence vote in parliament on Tuesday.

28 Apr 2013 - 10:44am

US suspects Assad used chemical weapons

US Secretary of Defence Chuck Hagel speaks with reporters after reading a statement on chemical weapon use in Syria in Abu Dhabi. Photo: AP

The White House said yesterday that US intelligence agencies now assess, with "varying degrees of confidence," that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons, but it said it needed conclusive proof before US President Barack Obama would take action.

26 Apr 2013 - 2:02am

West calls for UN inquiry into Syria chemical attack reports

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. Photo: Xinhua

Britain, France and the United States called on Wednesday for a United Nations inquiry into accusations by the Syrian government and the opposition of chemical weapons attacks.

But Russia, President Bashar al-Assad’s last major ally, insisted at a UN Security Council meeting that only the government’s allegations should be investigated.

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

US evaluating Syria chemical weapons charges

Medics help wounded men on stretchers at hospital after what the government claimed to be chemical weapons attack by rebels in Aleppo. Photo: EPA

The United States said on Tuesday it was evaluating allegations of chemical weapons use in Syria but dismissed charges that the opposition had used such weapons in the two-year-old conflict.

20 Mar 2013 - 4:24am

Briefs, January 29, 2013

Ben Affleck with his award for 'Argo' at the 19th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los Angeles. Photo: Reuters

Radio show that staged royal hoax scrapped

29 Jan 2013 - 7:05am

Myanmar denies using chemical weapons on rebels

Rebel soldiers of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA). Photo: AFP

Myanmar on Thursday denied accusations it had used chemical weapons against ethnic minority rebels in the northern state of Kachin, where an escalating conflict has overshadowed wider political reforms.

10 Jan 2013 - 3:04pm

US warns Syria against using chemical weapons

A teddy bear lies among the rubble of damaged buildings after fighting between rebels and government forces in Aleppo. Photo: AP

The White House and its allies are weighing military options to secure Syria's chemical and biological weapons, after intelligence reports showed the Syrian regime may be readying the arms and may be desperate enough to use them against rebels, US officials said.

One US official said Monday that Syria had begun mixing chemicals that might be used to make deadly sarin gas.

5 Dec 2012 - 2:25pm