UN says Syria chemical treaty application not complete

UN says Syria chemical treaty application not complete

UNITED NATIONS - Agence France-Presse
UN says Syria chemical treaty application not complete

Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar Ja'afari takes a question from a reporter, Sept. 12. AP photo

The United Nations has asked Syria for more information about its application to join the chemical weapons convention, holding up accession, a spokesman said Sept. 13.

Syria applied to the United Nations on Sept. 12 as part of a plan to head off a western military strike against President Bashar al-Assad over the alleged use of banned chemical arms.

"We are in touch with the Syrian government about their application. We are trying to obtain some further information so that the accession process can be completed," said a U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq.
 He declined to say what information was missing.

Syria had been one of seven U.N. members that have refused to join the 1993 convention banning the production and stockpiling of chemical arms.

Al-Assad's government announced it would sign up as it faced a growing threat of a U.S. military strike and Russia proposed a plan to put his country's chemical arsenal under international control.

The United States and other western nations accuse al-Assad's forces of launching a sarin gas attack on August 21 near Damascus in which hundreds died. The government blames opposition rebels for the attack.