April 26, 2013 10:27 am

Baird has no doubt about Syria chemical weapons claims, but wants UN probe

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird.

Fred Chartrand/The Canadian Press

OTTAWA – The foreign affairs minister says he has no reason to doubt U.S. or Israeli reports of chemical weapons being used in Syria.

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But John Baird says he would still like to see a full investigation by the United Nations into claims the weapons are being deployed in the country’s ongoing civil war.

Baird wouldn’t say whether Canada would consider the use of chemical weapons as a trigger for international military involvement in the country.

President Barack Obama had previously declared the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons would cross a “red line” for a major military response, but the White House says even a quick strike isn’t imminent.

Watch below as NBC’s Atia Abawai reports from Egypt’s capital on the White House’s response to alleged Syrian chemical weapon use:

Baird says Canada is concerned about the reports and will work with its allies to determine a response.

Syrian officials denied Friday that government forces have used chemical weapons against rebels, marking Damascus’ first response to U.S. assertions that it had.

© The Canadian Press, 2013

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