Live Blog: Kerry Says U.S. Has Evidence Sarin Gas Was Used in Syria

BY News Desk  August 31, 2013 at 2:27 PM EDT

President Barack Obama said Saturday from the White House that the U.S. should take military action against the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad. The president said that he will seek authorization from Congress when members return from recess.

Updated 12:22 p.m. EDT Sept. 1 | Secretary of State John Kerry asserted Sunday that the United States now has evidence of sarin gas use in Syria and said “the case gets stronger by the day” for a military attack.

A day after President Barack Obama stepped back from his threat to launch an attack, Kerry said in a series of interviews on the Sunday news shows that the administration learned of the sarin use within the past 24 hours through samples of hair and blood provided to Washington by first responders in Damascus.

Syrian government forces and rebels have been locked in battle since March 2011. By the end of August 2013, more than 100,000 people had died in the conflict, according to the United Nations.

A chemical attack in the Damascus area on Aug. 21 — just days after U.N. inspectors arrived — outraged the international community. The White House on Friday released an assessment of the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons. The report states that the U.S. has “high confidence” that the regime carried out the chemical attack on Aug. 21 that reportedly killed 1,429 people.

View the latest developments in PBS NewsHour/Reuters’ live-blog:




Related Resources

Aug. 28: President Obama: Countries that Use Chemical Weapons Must be Held Accountable

Aug. 26: U.S. Action on Syria Might Send Message to Other Nations, Reinforce Taboo

Aug. 23: Children Made Refugees by the Syrian War at Risk of Becoming ‘Lost Generation’

Timeline: Arab Spring analysis from the PBS NewsHour

View all of our Syria coverage in the above YouTube playlist.