WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry said that the Obama administration had their resolve strengthened to take action following an attack perpetrated by Syrian President Bashar Assad during which chemical weapons were used.
Their renewed call came after a report was issued by the United Nations regarding the attack.
While addressing members of the press during a State Department briefing, Kerry said that Russia, as well as other nations, urged the United States to wait for the U.N. report, which officials from those countries reportedly referred to as “the independent gold standard.”
He added, “Thanks to this weeks-long awaited … report, the facts on Syria only grew clearer, and the case only grew more compelling.”
Kerry noted that the U.N. interviewed more than 50 survivors during their investigation, and conducted multiple tests, which proved that the “Assad regime is guilty of carrying out that attack, even though that was not the mandate of the U.N. report.”
“Sarin was used. Sarin killed,” he added.
Kerry said the U.N. must “be prepared” to act next week on Syria.
Last Saturday, Kerry announced that he and Russia’s foreign minister had reached an agreement to rid Syria of its chemical stockpile. Obama said in a statement the agreement was welcome news, but added that “if diplomacy fails, the United States remains prepared to act.”
Kerry also quoted Sen. John McCain during the briefing while stating that, “a fight not joined is a fight not enjoyed.”
“We don’t have time today to pretend that anyone can have their own set of facts [about Syria’s chemical weapons].”
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