Putin Urges US to Present Evidence on Syria Chemical Attack
Russian President Vladimir Putin has called upon the US to present to the UN evidence that Syria was responsible for chemical weapons attacks.
Putin said it would be "utter nonsense" for Syria's government to provoke opponents with such attacks when it was in a position of strength.
“I am sure this was no more than a provocation by those looking to drag other countries [into the conflict] and obtain support of powerful international player, particularly the United States,” Putin said about the chemical attack that killed hundreds last week.
“If they say that the [Syrian] governmental forces used weapons of mass destruction…and that they have proof of it, let them present it to the UN inspectors and the [UN] Security Council,” Putin said, as cited by RIA Novosti.
Putin's remarks came after UN weapons inspectors had left Syria.
They crossed into neighbouring Lebanon after four days of inspections, including investigations of what happened in the Damascus suburbs on August 21.
US President Barack Obama has said he is considering military action against Syria based on intelligence reports.
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Putin is right, the US should present its evidence to the UN, after all why should it be so secret? He is wrong however to call the US claims "nonsense" on the basis that, because the regime is winning, it has no need to use chemical weapons, the use of these weapons could be viewed by the regime as ending the war sooner and therefore a legitimate reason. It is fair to say that, apart from the suspicion that the rebels do not possess the rockets that were used to deliver these chemicals, they were also fired from government held areas, also true that the regime resisted allowing in inspectors for some crucial days, days that meant evidence could either be removed or would degrade. So the regime, who claimed not to be responsible, also hid evidence. Seems to me all sides here are deliberately or stupidly clouding the issue.