Sunday, July 05
Latest News
  1. Lawyer: 2 London teens have married IS group fighters
  2. Saudi-led air strike on Yemen rebel bastion 'kills 23'
  3. IAEA: Iran atomic bomb probe may be completed in 2015
  4. FM: Iran will help meet 'common challenges' like extremism
  5. Greece PM urges 'No' vote to 'live with dignity in Europe'
  6. Ministry: Saudi policeman killed in raid, IS flags found
  7. UNESCO condemns IS destruction of Syria's Palmyra antiquities
  8. Tunisian Abu Iyadh, reported dead in Libya, is Qaeda veteran
  9. Nigerian troops battling Boko Haram gunmen outside Maiduguri
  10. Kuwait tightens security as emir attends joint prayers
  11. Mourners hold minute's silence at Tunisia beach attack resort
  12. Nigerian leader condemns 'inhuman, barbaric' Boko Haram attacks
  13. Greek banks say have sufficient liquidity until Tuesday
  14. UN watchdog chief says 'more work needed' with Iran after visit
  15. Yemen clashes, strikes kill 21 in Aden
  16. Tunisia arrests 8 with 'direct links' to beach massacre
  17. Israel says Hamas linked to IS assault on Egyptians
  18. Iraq Christians train to recapture homes from IS
  19. IS destroys statue outside Syria's Palmyra museum
  20. UN watchdog chief says 'more work needed' with Iran after visit

Israel sees no immediate threat from Syrian chemical weapons

Dec. 9, 2012 2:29 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 10, 2012 1:58 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Reuters) -- Israel does not perceive an immediate threat from Syria's chemical weapons, a senior Israeli official said on Sunday, after Western powers warned Damascus could use or lose such arms in the chaos of civil war.

As Syria's southern neighbor, Israel feels at risk from the deepening conflict and has said it would intervene to stop jihadi rebels or Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas seizing President Bashar Assad's chemical weapons.

"On these matters, we have to be prepared to protect ourselves, by ourselves," Vice Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon told Israel Radio. He added: "At this time, we see no sign that this weaponry is being pointed at us."

Yaalon is a former head of the Israeli Defense Force who is now in charge of strategic affairs in the government.

Some Israeli officials have voiced concern that Assad could attack Israel with chemical weapons in a last stand to rally support from the Arab world.

US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton said last week that Washington was worried an "increasingly desperate" Assad could use chemical weapons against rebels or lose control of them.

Israel and NATO countries say Syria has stocks of various chemical warfare agents at four sites.

Syria has been cagey about whether it has such weapons but insists that, if it had, it would keep them secure and use them only to fend off foreign foes. Though technically at war, Israel and Syria have not fought major battles in almost 40 years.

Rebels who have been fighting to topple Assad have recently overrun some Syrian military bases. Radical Islamist groups, including foreign jihadi fighters, are involved in the revolt.
Powered By: HTD Technologies
Ma'an News Agency
All rights reserved © 2005-2015