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Russia's Foreign Ministry calls for press-conference on Syria

August 26, 2013, 13:41 UTC+3

Announcement comes amidst rising tensions

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MOSCOW, August 26. (Itar-Tass) – Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is to hold a press-conference on Monday on the subject of the Syrian situation. As the Foreign Ministry announced, the event will be focused on use of chemical weapons in Syria and the situation surrounding the Syrian Arab Republic.

The press conference is scheduled for 4pm Moscow time; members of the Russian and international press were invited.

Escalating tension

The situation has rapidly escalated after reports that on August 21the Damascus suburb of Ghouta was attacked by chemical weapons. The Syrian government insisted that lethal nerve gas was deployed by militants, whereas insurgents place the blame on governmental forces. Representatives of the United States and Great Britain announced that they do not rule out any kind of response, and that includes use of force.

This information came on the backdrop of the UN mission arriving to Syria last week to inspect three instances of alleged chemical weapon use. On Monday the expert team has begun investigation of the latest chemical attack which was allegedly carried out in Damascus suburbs.

The United States announced they would wait for official results of the investigation. However, the next day they’ve declared plans to reinforce the country’s Navy presence in the Mediterranean as a reaction to the deteriorating situation in Syria. According The Sunday Telegraph newspaper, London and Washington are pushing for a “game-changing” UN resolution on Syria. NATO countries have not yet reached an agreement regarding their actions regarding Syria.

Meanwhile, Turkey’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu stated in an interview to Milliyet newspaper on Monday that Turkey will join any international anti-Syrian coalition even if the UN Security Council doesn’t achieve a broader consensus upon further actions.

Previously, Lavrov talked to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. “It seems that certain circles, including those who call for a military intervention circumventing the UN, are trying to openly put an end to collaborative U.S.-Russia efforts which over the past few months were aimed at summoning a peace conference to find a solution to this crisis,” said Lavrov.

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