BEIRUT

Lebanon News

Syria: Attack will engulf region, threaten U.S. interests

Syrian deputy Foreign Minister, Faisal Muqdad answers to AFP journalists' questions during an interview on May 9, 2013 in the Syrian capital Damascus. AFP PHOTO/JOSEPH EID

BEIRUT: Syria’s Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Meqdad said Monday a U.S.-led military strike in his country would engulf the entire region and threaten U.S. interests.

“The aggression on Syria, if it happens, will threaten international and regional situations,” Meqdad told Al-Manar television.

“Aggression on Syria is an aggression on the whole region and the Arab world, and our response will harm American interests,” he added.

Meqdad’s remarks echoed those of Iranian and Russian officials who have issued stern warnings against a possible U.S. military strike over the regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons.

President Barack Obama said he would seek congressional authorization before launching such an attack on Syria, the stated purpose being to punish Syrian President Bashar Assad for using chemical weapons against civilians.

Washington accused the regime of gassing its citizens on several occasions this year, including the Aug. 21 attack in Ghouta, which the U.S. said killed over 1,400 people including hundreds of children.

Meqdad also warned Turkey against participating in the possible strike, saying: “The Turkish government will not get away with it if it participates in the aggression.”

He accused the Arab League, which has urged the international community to take “deterrent” action against the Syrian regime, of “betraying the objectives it was built upon.”

He also said that Qatar and Saudi Arabia impose their decisions on the regional body and thanked Egypt's leadership for rejecting “to intervene in Syrian affairs and for standing against an aggression on [Syria].”

 

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