President Bashar Assad Warns Of Retaliation For US Strike On Syr - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

DEVELOPING: What Is Syria's Next Move And What Will The United States Do?

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Clinton talks up proposal on Syria chemical arms
    
WASHINGTON (AP) - Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton says any move by Syria to surrender its chemical weapons to international control would be an "important step."
    
Clinton spoke at the White House on Monday after meeting with President Barack Obama. The White House is asking Congress to approve a military strike punishing Syria's government for a chemical weapons attack. But a new proposal would have Syria turn over its stockpiles to avoid a strike.
    
Clinton is crediting current Secretary of State John Kerry and Russia's government with floating the proposal.
    
She says the world must deal with Syria's chemical weapons threat "as swiftly and comprehensively as possible." She says Russia must support the world's efforts or be held accountable.

US weighs talk of Syria dumping chemical weapons
    
WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. officials say they will take a "hard look" at a proposal for Syria to surrender its chemical weapons to international control to avoid a military strike.
    
State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said Monday the U.S. would consider the proposal floated by the foreign ministers of Russia and Syria with "serious skepticism" because it might be a stalling tactic. She said Syria had consistently refused to destroy its chemical weapons in the past.
    
The proposal came after Secretary of State John Kerry said in London on Monday that Syrian President Bashar Assad could end the crisis by turning over all his chemical weapons. Harf said Kerry wasn't putting forth a formal proposal.

Syria positive about giving up chemical weapons, but offers no specifics

    
MOSCOW (AP) - Syria says it welcomes Russia's appeal for Syria to place its chemical arsenals under international control, and then destroy them, in order to avert a U.S. military strike.
    
But the Syrians are not offering a time frame for doing so, or any other specifics.
    
A statement by Syria's foreign minister today appeared to mark that country's first official acknowledgement that it possesses chemical weapons. And it reflects what appears to be an attempt by Syrian President Bashar Assad to avoid a U.S. military attack.
    
The statement came a few hours after Secretary of State John Kerry said Assad could resolve the crisis by surrendering control of "every single bit" of his arsenal to the international community by the end of the week.
    
Also today, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Syria to immediately agree to transfer chemical weapons and chemical precursors to a safe place within the country, for destruction by international teams.
    
AP poll: Most Americans oppose strike on Syria

    
WASHINGTON (AP) - A new Associated Press poll shows a majority of Americans oppose a U.S. strike on Syria, despite a weeks-long Obama administration campaign to respond to chemical weapons attacks the U.S. blames on President Bashar Assad's regime.
    
Most of those surveyed said they believe even limited U.S. attacks - as President Barack Obama has promised - would lead to a long-term commitment of military forces in Syria.
    
And only 20 percent of Americans thought U.S. military action in Syria would deter other rogue nations from using their own weapons of mass destruction in the future.
    
That's been a top White House argument as it seeks congressional approval to strike Syria.
    
Released Monday, the AP poll was conducted September 6-8 by GfK Public Affairs and Corporate Communications.
    
US dismisses Assad's denials
    
WASHINGTON (AP) - His words aren't backed up by the facts. That's the Obama administration's response to the denials by Syrian President Bashar Assad that his military used chemical weapons in a deadly attack near Damascus last month.
    
National Security Council spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan says it's no surprise that someone who would kill hundreds of children with poison gas would also lie about it.
    
Assad, in an interview broadcast on CBS' "This Morning," said his troops didn't use chemical weapons in an attack last month near Damascus. He also warned that there will be consequences for the United States if it launches a military strike against him.
    
Secretary of State John Kerry, speaking today in London, said he'd be confident going into any courtroom with the evidence gathered by the United States against Syria's government.
    
Amid continued reluctance by members of Congress to go along with a military strike in Syria, President Barack Obama continues his effort to convince lawmakers and the American public that it's the right thing to do. Obama has interviews scheduled on six TV news broadcasts this evening, and he's again sent his senior foreign policy team to lobby Congress.
    
UNITED-STATES-SYRIA-RICE
    
Obama adviser: Strikes at Syria 'not another war'
    
WASHINGTON (AP) - White House national security adviser Susan Rice says any U.S. military action against Syria "would not be another war."
    
She says the Syrian regime used chemical weapons against its own people and said that raises threats to other countries in the region, including Israel, the region's top U.S. ally.
    
Rice's remarks Monday to the New America Foundation think tank are part of a concerted White House effort to build support with the public and in Congress to authorize Obama to use military action against the Syrian government.
    
The effort faces widespread skepticism. Obama is scheduled to deliver an address to the nation on Tuesday.
    
Rice says the Obama administration and allies have exhausted other measures to stop Syria's use of weapons.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE:

WASHINGTON (AP) - Syrian President Bashar Assad is warning there will be retaliation against the U. S. for any military strike launched in response to a chemical weapons attack.
    
In an interview broadcast Monday on CBS' "This Morning," Assad says, quote, "You should expect everything."
    
Asked by anchorman Charlie Rose to elaborate, Assad says, "You should expect everything. Not necessarily from the government."
    
He said the U.S. would "pay the price if you are not wise with dealing with terrorists."
    
President Barack Obama is seeking an authorization from Congress to punish Assad for an Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack that the administration maintains Assad ordered.
    
Assad denied that, saying his soldiers were "in another area" at the time. Asked about the case the U.S. is arguing, Assad said, "nothing has been presented."

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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