Syria’s Chemical-Arms Disclosure Timing in Question

Global Security Newswire Staff
See more stories about...
Global Security Newswire Staff
Sept. 19, 2013, 7:02 a.m.

The United States on Wed­nes­day in­dic­ated it no longer ex­pects Syr­i­an Pres­id­ent Bashar As­sad’s re­gime to fully dis­close its chem­ic­al-war­fare as­sets this week, an ex­pect­a­tion es­tab­lished sev­er­al days ago un­der a U.S.-Rus­si­an plan for Dam­as­cus to even­tu­ally re­lin­quish the stocks, the Los Angeles Times re­por­ted.

“Our goal is to see for­ward mo­mentum,” but not ne­ces­sar­ily a full de­clar­a­tion, be­fore Sunday, U.S. State De­part­ment spokes­wo­man Mar­ie Harf said. “We’ve nev­er said it was a hard and fast dead­line,” the spokes­wo­man ad­ded.

Sev­er­al days ago, Sec­ret­ary of State John Kerry said he and Rus­sia’s top dip­lo­mat had de­cided Dam­as­cus would have one week to provide “a com­pre­hens­ive list­ing” of its chem­ic­al-weapon as­sets. Wash­ing­ton would per­mit “no games, no room for avoid­ance, or any­thing less than full com­pli­ance,” he said then.

A seni­or Rus­si­an dip­lo­mat on Wed­nes­day said Dam­as­cus “with­in a week” would send a chem­ic­al-arms de­clar­a­tion to the Or­gan­iz­a­tion for the Pro­hib­i­tion of Chem­ic­al Weapons, IT­AR-Tass re­por­ted. The Rus­si­an state-owned news agency did not spe­cify wheth­er the in­form­a­tion would amount to a com­plete dis­clos­ure.

The 41-na­tion OP­CW Ex­ec­ut­ive Coun­cil is set on Fri­day to be­gin dis­cuss­ing form­al pro­ced­ures for elim­in­at­ing the As­sad gov­ern­ment’s chem­ic­al ar­sen­al, the Wall Street Journ­al re­por­ted. One ex­pert said the coun­cil is likely to ad­opt a U.S.-Rus­si­an timeline call­ing for full de­struc­tion of the stock­pile by the middle of next year, though the mul­ti­lat­er­al body is not ob­lig­ated to do so.

Sep­ar­ately, Mo­scow in­tends by Fri­day to cir­cu­late Syr­i­an-gov­ern­ment in­dic­a­tions that As­sad’s op­pon­ents have car­ried out chem­ic­al strikes, Rus­si­an Deputy For­eign Min­is­ter Mikhail Bog­dan­ov said in Thursday re­marks quoted by IT­AR-Tass.

In a Wed­nes­day in­ter­view with Fox News, As­sad chal­lenged Wash­ing­ton to foot the bill for des­troy­ing the arms and “take the re­spons­ib­il­ity of bring­ing tox­ic ma­ter­i­als to the United States,” Re­u­ters re­por­ted. He also re­af­firmed deni­als that his gov­ern­ment had used its chem­ic­al arms in the Syr­i­an civil war, now in its third year.

What We're Following See More »
THE QUESTION
How Many People Protested in Philly Yesterday?
1 hours ago
THE ANSWER

About 5,500, according to official estimates. "The Monday figures marked a large increase from the protests at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where even the largest protests only drew a couple of hundred demonstrators. But it’s a far cry from the 35,000 to 50,000 that Philadelphia city officials initially expected."

Source:
NO BATTLEGROUND STATES LEAN TRUMP
NY Times’ Upshot Gives Clinton 68% Chance to Win
1 hours ago
THE LATEST

Only a day after FiveThirtyEight's Now Cast gave Donald Trump a 57% chance of winning, the New York Times' Upshot fires back with its own analysis that shows Hillary Clinton with a 68% chance to be the next president. Its model "calculates win probabilities for each state," which incorporate recent polls plus "a state's past election results and national polling." Notably, all of the battleground states that "vote like the country as a whole" either lean toward Clinton or are toss-ups. None lean toward Trump.

Source:
HOLCOMB IS A FORMER TOP AIDE
Indiana Lt. Gov. Tapped to Run for Pence’s Seat
2 hours ago
THE DETAILS

On the second ballot, the Indiana Republican Party's Central Committee tapped Lt. Gov. Eric Holcomb as their nominee to succeed Gov. Mike Pence this fall. "Holcomb was a top aide to former Gov. Mitch Daniels and Sen. Dan Coats and a former chairman of the state Republican Party."

Source:
AFTER ROLL CALL VOTE
Sanders May Officially Nominate Clinton
4 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Negotiations are underway to have Bernie Sanders officially nominate Hillary Clinton for president at the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night, a move that would further signal party unity. According to a source familiar with the talks, the Vermont senator would nominate the presumptive Democratic nominee after the roll call vote."

Source:
THE REVOLUTION CONTINUES
Sanders to Channel His Movement into Local Races
4 hours ago
THE DETAILS

Bernie Sanders said he'll begin pivoting his campaign to an organization designed to help candidates at the local level around the country. At a breakfast for the Wisconsin delegation to the DNC this morning, he said the new group will "bring people into the political process around a progressive agenda," as it supports candidates "running for school board, for city council, for state legislature."

Source:
×