In comment earlier today Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has dramatically escalated accusations against Syria , claiming that his government had determined Syrian troops have used “at least 200″ chemical weapons over the course of the ongoing civil war.
Erdogan insisted Turkey has “proof” of the allegations and has “the remainders of these missiles” as well as pictures of them. He also claimed Turkish hospitals had treated victims of such attacks.
The claims are a huge step up from Israel’s claims of a couple weeks ago, which alleged “up to eight” incidents of chemical weapons use, or the subsequent US version, which claimed only two.
Kerry: Strong evidence
US Secretary of State John Kerry seems to be on board for these claims as well though, outlandish though they may be, announcing on Google+ shortly after Erdogan’s announcement that there is “strong evidence” of Assad using chemical weapons.
US President Barack Obama has said that the use of chemical weapons in Syria would represent the crossing of a red line, insinuating that the US will take action if it determines that chemical weapons have been used.
Wary of the false intelligence used to justify the 2003 war in Iraq, the United States says it wants proof that chemical weapons have been used before taking any action in Syria.
But if the evidence is confirmed it would increase the possibility of Western intervention against Assad to stop the two-year civil war, even as the United States and Russia try to bring the sides to peace talks.
“We have been making tests and we have some indications regarding chemical weapons being used, but in order to make sure and verify we are continuing these tests and will be sharing these tests with UN agencies,” Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said in the Jordanian capital Amman on Friday.
“We know the Syrian regime has stocks .. And everybody knows the Syrian regime has this capacity,” Davutoglu said. “Of course this has been one of our major concerns because chemical weapons are a threat against humanity and a crime.”