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Middle east

Chemical weapons used in Syria, says Turkey

© AFP

Video by Alexander TURNBULL , Olivia SALAZAR WINSPEAR

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-05-11

Turkey’s foreign minister said Friday that initial medical tests carried out on Syrian war casualties indicated that they were victims of chemical weapons. He added that Damascus was known to stockpile chemical weapons.

Tests on Syrian war casualties arriving in Turkey indicate chemical weapons have been used by Syrian forces, and further tests are being carried out to verify the evidence, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Friday.

“We have been making tests and we have some indications regarding chemical weapons being used, but in order to make sure and verify we are continuing these tests and will be sharing these tests with UN agencies,” he said in Amman.

Turkey confirmed last week that it had begun testing blood samples taken from Syrian casualties brought over its border for treatment to determine whether they were victims of chemical weapons.

Davutoglu said the prospect of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad using chemical weapons had long been a real concern for his country and added that it was not a secret Damacus had stockpiles and had never signed international accords banning the use of such weapons.

“We know the Syrian regime has stocks ... And everybody knows the Syrian regime has this capacity,” Davutoglu said.

“Ofcourse this has been one of our major concerns because chemical weapons are a threat against humanity and a crime.”

Washington has said it views the use of chemical weapons in Syria as a “red line” but wants proof before taking any action in response.

(REUTERS)

Date created : 2013-05-11

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