Syrian chemical weapons under control

Filed on February 3, 2013

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said the Syrian authorities were keeping chemical weapons under control.

Syria has not signed the international Chemical Weapons Convention and is believed to possess mustard gas and sarin, an extremely toxic nerve agent.

The CIA says the chemical weapons can be delivered by aircraft, ballistic missile, and artillery rockets.

"We have reliable information that so far the Syrian government controls the situation" with the chemical weapons, Lavrov said at the International Security Conference in Munich.

"If the rebels seize those weapons, they will become a huge threat. But still, the situation doesn't give any grounds for serious worries," he said.

Syria last year said they could be used against "foreign invaders".

Lavrov reiterated Russia's stance against foreign interference in the two-year conflict in Syria and the removal of its president bound in a standoff with the opposition.

"The persistence of those who say that number one priority is to remove President Bashar al-Assad is the only biggest reason for the continuing tragedy in Syria," said Lavrov.

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