WASHINGTON- The White House said on Friday it was working with partners to ratchet up pressure on Syria to accelerate removal of its chemical weapons after the United States accused it of deliberately stalling an international disarmament deal.

The Obama administration stepped up criticism of President Bashar Assad's government as Secretary of State John Kerry met Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Munich amid a U.S. push for Moscow to do more to win cooperation from its ally Damascus.

Russia earlier rejected U.S. charges that Syria is dragging its feet on giving up chemical weapons, saying that a June 30 deadline to destroy Assad's arsenal of toxic agents remains viable despite delays.




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