Kerry Says Accountability is Necessary for Chemical Weapons Use in Syria

Hinting at a military response, Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday accused Syria of using chemical weapons against its people, and said President Barack Obama believes “there must be accountability.”

Kerry, using forceful language in a brief statement to reporters, said images that have emerged from Syria in the past week — entire families killed without shedding a drop of blood, bodies contorting in spasms — “shock the conscience of the world.”

The president feels there must be accountability for those who use “the world’s most heinous weapons,” he said.

The secretary added: “Nothing today is more serious, and nothing is receiving more serious scrutiny.”

He spoke hours after a United Nations team investigating claims of a poison-gas attack in a rebel-held suburb of the Syrian capital collected blood samples and interviewed survivors despite being temporarily turned back by sniper fire.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said the team had completed its first day of inspection as he chided the regime and opposition forces to ensure "the safety and security of the investigation teams."

The six-car convoy carrying the team was initially thwarted and forced to return to a government checkpoint after being "deliberately" targeted while driving in the capital.

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