Kerry says Saudi backs US war plans on Syria

US Secretary of State John Kerry

TEHRAN (FNA)- US Secretary of State John Kerry said Saudi Arabia has agreed to back a US-led military offensive against Syria as US resists to back down from its military ambitions despite international calls to avoid attacking Syria.

Kerry made the remarks at the US Embassy in Paris on Sunday after he held meetings with nine Arab foreign ministers and Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby in the French capital, Al-Alam reported.

The US secretary of state also said that “a number of countries” had agreed to the denunciation approved by several countries on the sidelines of the recent G20 summit in Russia. Kerry called it the “G20 side statement”.

On Friday, US President Barack Obama defied pressure to abandon plans for a war against Syria and claimed that he gained the support of nine G20 leaders for a “strong” response to the alleged chemical weapons in the suburbs of Damascus last month.

Ten G20 countries, including the US, plus Spain have reportedly signed a statement demanding a strong international response, which fell short of backing a military offensive against Syria.

Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal and Saudi Arabia have signed on to the “G20 side statement” Kerry said on Sunday, and “have supported the strike and they support taking action.”

The top US diplomat said he was “not going to name the others” who will sign the statement, but said they “agreed they would go back and make their own announcements within 24 hours.”

The war rhetoric against Syria intensified after foreign-backed opposition forces accused the government of President Bashar al-Assad of launching the chemical attack on militant strongholds in the suburbs of Damascus on August 21.

Damascus has vehemently denied the accusations, saying the attack was carried out by the militants themselves as a false-flag operation.

On August 31, Obama said he has decided that Washington must take military action against the Syrian government, which would mean a unilateral military strike without a UN mandate.

Obama said that despite having made up his mind, he will take the case to US Congress. But he added that he is prepared to order military action against the Syrian government at any time.

On Wednesday, the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 10-7 in favor of a resolution authorizing the Obama administration to attack Syria.

Obama administration officials have embarked upon an extensive lobbying campaign on Capitol Hill, where US lawmakers in both chambers of Congress are expected to vote on a military action against Syria after they return from recess on September 9.

By Fars News Agency


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