Syria: What the Big Heads are Saying
US Secretary of State John Kerry
"The administration is actively consulting with members of Congress, and we will continue to have these conversations in the days ahead. President Obama has also been in close touch with the leaders of our key allies, and the president will be making an informed decision about how to respond to this indiscriminate use of chemical weapons."
"If the US leads a military intervention, this will have dangerous consequences. It will bring chaos and the region will burn."
Joshua Landis, Director: Center for Middle East Studies
"The US must respond to the use of chemical weapons in a forceful manner, but should not launch a broader intervention in Syria.
Preserving the widely respected international norm banning the use of chemical weapons is a clear interest of the US and international community.
The US, however, should avoid getting sucked into the Syrian Civil War. Thus, it should punish Assad with enough force to deter future use of chemical weapons, but without using so much force that it gets drawn into an open-ended conflict."
"We are prepared, we have moved assets in place to be able to fulfil and comply with whatever option the president wishes to take, if he wishes to take any of the options he’s asked for. We are ready to go, like that."
US House Speaker John Boehner Communications Aide Brendan Buck
“The Syrian regime has blatantly crossed President Obama’s red line, the White House has acknowledged, by using chemical weapons on its people,”
Russian President Vladimir Putin
“President Putin said that they did not have evidence of whether a chemical weapons attack had taken place or who was responsible.”
Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Araqchi
"We want to strongly warn against any military attack in Syria. There will definitely be perilous consequences for the region,"
"These complications and consequences will not be restricted to Syria. It will engulf the whole region."