Issue Date: July 30, 2012
Syria Threatens To Use Chemical Weapons Against Foreign Attack
Syria acknowledged for the first time last week that it possesses chemical and biological weapons and said it would use them against a foreign attacker. “All of these types of weapons are in storage and under security and the direct supervision of the Syrian armed forces and will never be used unless Syria is exposed to external aggression,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi said during a news conference. He stressed that the regime will not deploy the arsenal against its own citizens. “No chemical or biological weapons will ever be used, and I repeat, will never be used, during the crisis in Syria no matter what the developments inside Syria,” Makdissi said. The declaration comes as embattled President Bashar al-Assad faces a rebellion that has left at least 19,000 people dead over the past 17 months. Syria is one of only eight countries that have refused to sign the Chemical Weapons Convention, a global accord that bans the production, stockpiling, and use of chemical warfare materials. Syria is believed to have nerve agents as well as mustard gas and cyanide.
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