Syria to Expedite Transport of Chemical Agent for Destruction

Global Security Newswire Staff
See more stories about...
Global Security Newswire Staff
Dec. 23, 2013, 6:02 a.m.

Syr­ia plans by Dec. 31 to ex­ped­ite the trans­port of 20 tons of mus­tard blister agent to a port city for re­mov­al and de­struc­tion, Re­u­ters re­ports.

Word of the ship­ment, which would in­clude oth­er war­fare chem­ic­als con­sidered among the coun­try’s “most crit­ic­al,” came days after in­ter­na­tion­al of­fi­cials said they could miss an end-of-year dead­line for re­mov­ing more of the most leth­al ma­ter­i­als held by Syr­i­an Pres­id­ent Bashar As­sad. The lead­er ad­mit­ted main­tain­ing a chem­ic­al ar­sen­al and agreed to its de­struc­tion in Septem­ber, after a nerve-gas at­tack weeks earli­er raised the pos­sib­il­ity of U.S. mil­it­ary in­ter­ven­tion against his re­gime.

As­sad’s forces earli­er this month seized a stra­tegic high­way ex­pec­ted to prove cru­cial in de­liv­er­ing his chem­ic­al stocks to the coastal city of Latakia. Upon reach­ing the port, the ma­ter­i­als are to be loaded onto for­eign ves­sels and taken away for de­struc­tion at sea.

Still, pro­tec­tion of the chem­ic­al ship­ments has re­mained a press­ing worry for dis­arm­a­ment per­son­nel. Last week, of­fi­cials at the Or­gan­iz­a­tion for the Pro­hib­i­tion of Chem­ic­al Weapons blamed se­cur­ity con­cerns and oth­er lo­gist­ic­al hurdles for pos­sible delays in trans­port.

Rus­sia last week flew an ar­ray of chem­ic­al-trans­port and per­son­nel-sup­port equip­ment in­to Syr­ia, RIA Nov­osti re­por­ted on Monday.

Mo­scow “air­lif­ted 75 vehicles, in­clud­ing 50 Kamaz trucks and 25 Ur­al ar­mored vehicles to the air­port in Latakia on Dec. 18-20,” Rus­si­an De­fense Min­is­ter Sergei Shoigu said dur­ing a Monday meet­ing with Pres­id­ent Vladi­mir Putin.

This art­icle was pub­lished in Glob­al Se­cur­ity News­wire, which is pro­duced in­de­pend­ently by Na­tion­al Journ­al Group un­der con­tract with the Nuc­le­ar Threat Ini­ti­at­ive. NTI is a non­profit, non­par­tis­an group work­ing to re­duce glob­al threats from nuc­le­ar, bio­lo­gic­al, and chem­ic­al weapons.

What We're Following See More »
BACKING OUT ON BERNIE
Trump Won’t Debate Sanders After All
1 days ago
THE LATEST

Trump, in a statement: “Based on the fact that the Democratic nominating process is totally rigged and Crooked Hillary Clinton and Deborah Wasserman Schultz will not allow Bernie Sanders to win, and now that I am the presumptive Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second place finisher. ... I will wait to debate the first place finisher in the Democratic Party, probably Crooked Hillary Clinton, or whoever it may be.”

AKNOWLEDGING THE INEVITABLE
UAW: Time to Unite Behind Hillary
2 days ago
THE DETAILS

"It's about time for unity," said UAW President Dennis Williams. "We're endorsing Hillary Clinton. She's gotten 3 million more votes than Bernie, a million more votes than Donald Trump. She's our nominee." He called Sanders "a great friend of the UAW" while saying Trump "does not support the economic security of UAW families." Some 28 percent of UAW members indicated their support for Trump in an internal survey.

Source:
AP KEEPING COUNT
Trump Clinches Enough Delegates for the Nomination
2 days ago
THE LATEST

"Donald Trump on Thursday reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign. Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party's unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the convention."

Source:
TRUMP FLOATED IDEA ON JIMMY KIMMEL’S SHOW
Trump/Sanders Debate Before California Primary?
2 days ago
THE LATEST
CAMPAIGNS INJECTED NEW AD MONEY
California: It’s Not Over Yet
2 days ago
THE LATEST

"Clinton and Bernie Sanders "are now devoting additional money to television advertising. A day after Sanders announced a new ad buy of less than $2 million in the state, Clinton announced her own television campaign. Ads featuring actor Morgan Freeman as well as labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta will air beginning on Fridayin Fresno, Sacramento, and Los Angeles media markets. Some ads will also target Latino voters and Asian American voters. The total value of the buy is about six figures according to the Clinton campaign." Meanwhile, a new poll shows Sanders within the margin of error, trailing Clinton 44%-46%.

Source:
×