Syria says rebels used chemicals to spark strikes

AFP , Wednesday 28 Aug 2013

Syria's envoy to the United Nations on Wednesday accused rebel forces of using chemical weapons to prompt foreign powers to take military action against the government.

"Many facts tend to prove the innocence of the Syrian government, which has been subject to false accusations," ambassador Bashar al-Jaafari told state media.

Jaafari said such facts also showed that "armed groups have used chemical weapons in order to bring about military intervention and aggression against Syria".

The West and Turkey "have enabled terrorist groups to create a laboratory for chemical weapons on Turkish territory with materials provided by Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar... and to bring these chemical weapons to Syria for use," he alleged.

The United States says it is ready to take possible military action against Syria in response to reported chemical weapons attacks last week that are said to have killed more than 300 people on the outskirts of Damascus.

Along with Britain, it says that there is "no doubt" that the regime carried out the attacks on the rebel-held areas as it is the only side capable of doing so.

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