Israeli Official Cautiously Welcomes Syria Chemical Arms Plan

Thursday, 12 Sep 2013 12:16 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
JERUSALEM — A senior Israeli official close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu voiced cautious support on Thursday for a plan to place Syria's chemical weapons under international control.

"I cannot say that we have full faith, but if this Russian proposal . . . will really remove the chemical weaponry from Syria, first of all, and will then dismantle it . . . then this is a way to end this tragedy and a way to end this threat too," Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz said.

Urgent: Should U.S. Strike Syria? Vote Here

Speaking on Israel's Army Radio, Steinitz said implementation of the plan should also require that Moscow "guarantee Syria is cleansed of chemical weaponry".

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov are due to meet in Geneva on Thursday to try to agree on a strategy to eliminate the Syrian arsenal.

Wary of appearing to meddle in the big-power struggle over the Syrian civil war that has escalated since President Bashar Assad's forces' alleged gas attack near Damascus on Aug 21, Israel has largely avoided public comment.

Netanyahu on Wednesday demanded the Assad government be "stripped of its chemical weapons" but stopped short of specifically endorsing the Russian proposal, which has been accepted by Damascus.

The remarks by Steinitz suggested that Israel would want any consensual decommissioning of Syria's chemical arsenal to be expedited by sending it abroad first.

David Friedman, a former counter-proliferation official with Israel's Defense Ministry, told Reuters that neutralizing the weapons inside Syria could take 1-2 years but that the process could be shortened were they shipped out to Russia, which is better equipped with chemical counter-agents and incinerators.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Biden Heads to Ukraine After Fragile Truce Shattered

Sunday, 20 Apr 2014 23:35 PM

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will begin a two-day visit to Ukraine on Monday, hours after a fragile Easter truce was sh . . .

'Re-balancing' Act: Obama Heads to Asia Amid Policy Skepticism

Sunday, 20 Apr 2014 23:13 PM

Five years after refashioning U.S. foreign policy to emphasize Asia, President Barack Obama will face questions over his . . .

Queen Elizabeth Portrait Released to Mark 88th Birthday

Sunday, 20 Apr 2014 22:18 PM

A new portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, taken by David Bailey, has been released to mark her 88th birthday on Monday, with . . .

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved