U.S. President Barack Obama vowed that the government of Syria would face “international consequences” for the recent deadly chemical attack. Obama however made clear that any military response would be limited to avoid dragging the United States into another war in the Middle East.
Obama, casting the need for action based on U.S. national security interests instead of humanitarian grounds, made his case to a war-weary American public. The President while saying he and leaders of the allied forces had not yet made a decision on military strikes against the loyalists of President Bashar al-Assad remarked that he left little doubt that the choice was not whether to act but when.
“We have concluded that the Syrian government in fact carried these out, and if that’s so, then there need to be international consequences,” Obama said in a televised interview.
“I have no interest in any open-ended conflict in Syria, but we do have to make sure that when countries break international norms on weapons like chemical weapons that could threaten us, that they are held accountable,” Obama said.
Syria’s government blamed rebel “terrorists” for releasing the toxins with the help of the United States, Britain, and France, and warned it would be a “graveyard of invaders.”
In another development, Syrian government officials have remarked that rebel forces are the ones that used chemical weapons on civilians. Syria’s deputy foreign minister Faisal al Maqdad says the U.S., Britain and France will regret their role in supporting government foes.
“The most dangerous thing that the United States, Britain, and France encourage and adopt are the words of these terrorists. The most dangerous thing will be that those terrorists will use chemical weapons, soon, against European people,” said Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister, Faisal Al-Maqdad.