CAIRO, Egypt — American and Jordanian military are planning to secure a suspected Syrian stockpile of nerve and mustard gas weapons, according to the Wall Street Journal. The paper wrote that since the 1970s, Syria has stockpiled mustard gas, sarin nerve gas, and cyanide, which they believe have been weaponized into bombs and missiles. Experts think these weapons are stored in some of Syria’s most restive regions: the north and middle of the country.
In response to a fear that the agents could fall into the hands of terrorists, Jordanian military officials were in Washington last month to discuss how to secure them. The officials’ planning does not reflect a belief that president Bashar al-Assad will use the weapons on Syrian rebels or protesters.
The Journal noted that its sources did not predict that either American or Jordanian commandos would enter Syria without a broader diplomatic effort. Diplomats believe the Syrian regime will agree to an Arab League peacekeeping mission, which would include elements to secure weapons stockpiles.
The paper described the Syrian weapons issue “as among the most pressing issues the Obama administration faces”
Meanwhile, former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, who has been appointed joint UN-Arab League envoy to Syria, called for mediation and an end to violence, which members of Syria’s opposition “angrily rejected,” the BBC said.
Burhan Ghalioun, the leader of Syria’s main opposition group, told the Associated Press, “These kind of comments are disappointing and do not give a lot of hope for people in Syria being massacred every day. It feels like we are watching the same movie being repeated over and over again.”
He continued, “My fear is that, like other international envoys before him, the aim is to waste a month or two of pointless mediation efforts,”