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US defence secretary Chuck Hagel says the US is "ready to go" with a strike on Syria - and in the UK, David Cameron has recalled Parliament from summer recess to discuss the urgent issue following alleged chemical weapons attacks in Damascus.

The controversial toxic gas attack which some estimates claim killed around 1,300 people in Damascus has caused international outrage as UN inspectors attempt to verify the claims. The inspectors claim to have collected 'valuable' samples from the scene, despite reportedly being fired upon by a sniper in the area.

Defence secretary in the US, Chuck Hagel told the BBC that President Obama "all options for all contingencies." 
"We are prepared. We have moved assets in place to be able to fulfil and comply with whatever option the president wishes to take," said Hagel.

Prime Minister Cameron said in a statement on Twitter: "Speaker agrees my request to recall Parliament on Thurs. There'll be a clear Govt motion & vote on UK response to chemical weapons attacks."

"What we saw in Syria last week should shock the conscience of the world. It defies any code of morality," US Secretary of State John Kerry said at a press conference on Monday.

"Make no mistake, President Obama believes there must be accountability for those who would use the world's most heinous weapons against the world's most vulnerable people."

"The US faces failure just like in all the previous wars they waged, starting with Vietnam and up to our days," said Syria's president Bashar al-Assad in an interview with Russia's Izvestia newspaper, according to Al Jazeera.

"America has taken part in many wars but could not once achieve its political goals for which the wars were started. Yes, it is true, the great powers can wage wars but can they win them?" said Assad. 

A recent letter published in the Financial Times.

 


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US ready to launch attack on Syria, says Defence Secretary, as UK parliament is recalled
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