Kerry: Syria used Sarin gas on civilians - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Kerry: Syria used Sarin gas on civilians

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NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

The United Nations is asking the head of its chemical weapons inspection team to speed up the testing of samples collected in Syria last week.

This comes after Secretary of State John Kerry made a specific assertion Sunday.

Syria used Sarin gas in the deadly attack against its own citizens and Kerry says the U.S. has to stop Syria from using it again.

Kerry took his case for a military strike against Syria to the American people Sunday and says the U.S. has proof the Syrian government used Sarin gas to kill civilians.

"We now know that hair and blood samples that have come to us from East Damascus from individuals who are engaged as first responders in East Damascus. I can report today they have tested positive for signs of Sarin,” said Kerry.

The U.S accuses Syria of killing 1,429 of its own people, including more than 400 children, in an August 21st chemical weapons attack in a suburb of Damascus. President Obama has characterized the use of chemical weapons by Syria as a red line for us.

Yesterday, President Obama said he will seek a Congressional vote on military intervention against the Assad regime.

“I think Senator Lindsey Graham and I, and others will be wanting a strategy, a plan, rather than just, we’re going to launch some cruise missiles at that’s it,” said Sen. John McCain (R-AZ).

Congress is scheduled to return from a summer break on September 9th.

“If he feels so strongly about it and he doesn’t want to take action himself then he should call us back in session tomorrow. We can’t wait 9-10 days for this and send mixed signs to the world and in particular Iran,” said Congressman Peter King (R-NY).

Meanwhile, The United Nations has asked the head of its chemical weapons inspection team to expedite the analysis of tests from samples collected from Syria last week. The United Nations maintains that its team is uniquely capable of testing samples in an impartial manner, and that any attack on Syria should come with broad international support.

However, the U.N. Security Council remains deeply divided on the issue, and any vote on a strike against Syria would all but certainly be vetoed by its ally Russia -- essentially paralyzing the U.N.'s most powerful body.

Sunday morning, Kerry defended the president’s decision to wait for congressional support before taking action.

"The Assad regime is already in the defensive.”

The President has not said what he will do of Congress says “no” to a military strike. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) announced the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will conduct a hearing on Syria on Tuesday.

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