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Syria Says It Will Declare Chemical Weapons, Sign Convention
BEIRUT (AP) -- The Syrian foreign minister says the Assad regime will declare its chemical weapons arsenal and sign chemical weapons convention.
Russian Plan for Syria's Chemical Weapons Gaining Momentum
WASHINGTON -- French, British and American leaders agreed Tuesday to explore the viability Syrian chemical weapons being turned over to international control.
The Russians proposed the idea and Syrian officials have said they support the concept.
President Barack Obama says he is willing to support the initiative "if it's real." Obama is planning to address the nation at 9 p.m. Tuesday.
The Syrian Coalition, which opposes the Assad regime in Syria, said Tuesday that the Russian proposal is a stall tactic. The proposal doesn't address Assad's "crimes against innocents."
UPDATE: Syria Opposition Dismisses Russian Proposal, Calls for Strikes
BEIRUT (AP) -- Syria's main opposition bloc is urging the West to strike Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime despite Russia's initiative to have Damascus surrender its chemical weapons to international control.
The Syrian National Coalition dismisses the proposal as a maneuver to escape punishment. It has been cheering for international military action, hoping a blow would shift the bloody war of attrition between rebels and Assad's forces, which has left more than 100,000 dead in more than 2 1/2 years of fighting.
In a statement Tuesday, the coalition said Moscow's proposal "aims to procrastinate and will lead to more death and destruction of the Syrian people."
The group says, "A violation of international law should lead to an international retaliation that is proportional in size." It adds that handing over the weapons isn't enough to offset crimes against humanity.
Earlier coverage: Syria Accepts Chemical Weapons Proposal
MOSCOW -- The Syrian government has reportedly accepted a Russian proposal to turn over its chemical weapons.
USA Today is reporting that, according to a Russian news agency, Syria's foreign minister says they have accepted Russia's initiative.
USA Today is reporting that it's not clear whether the agreement would go along with a French proposal to make Syria's chemical weapon program public.
Also, according to Reuters, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says his country is working with Syria on a plan to put Syria's chemical weapons under international control.
Reuters reported that the idea was first discussed between President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin during last week's Group of 20 summit.
SOURCE: USA Today
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