NATO tells Syrian President Bashar al-Assad that any use of chemical weapons would be met by an immediate international response.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has been accused of gathering chemical weapons to use against its opponents.
NATO told Bashar al-Assad on Tuesday that any use of chemical weapons would be met by an immediate international response.
[Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO Secretary General]:
"The possible use of chemical weapons would be completely unacceptable for the whole international community and if anybody resorts to these terrible weapons I would expect an immediate reaction from the international community."
U.S. government sources said Washington had information that Syria was making what could be seen as preparations to use its chemical arsenal.
U.S. President Barack Obama on Monday (December 3) threatened Assad to back down without saying how the United States might respond.
The Foreign Ministry in Damascus said it would never use such weapons against Syrians.
The United Nations and European Union both said they were reducing their presence in Syria.
A spokesman for U.N. humanitarian operations said the move would not stop aid deliveries to accessible areas.
Turkey asked NATO to supply defensive missiles last month after several Syrian missiles landed in Turkey.
Rasmussen said earlier that the United States, Germany and the Netherlands should be able to deploy the missiles "within weeks."
Russia has been at odds with NATO over how to end the Syrian conflict and has vetoed U.N. resolutions aimed at pressuring Assad to step down.
Despite the veto, NATO has decided to go ahead with the arms deal and supply Hungary with the defensive missiles.
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