US says Syria cynically stonewalls UN nuclear probe

June 6, 2012 18:58


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VIENNA - The United States accused Syria on Wednesday of cynically using its crackdown on an uprising at home to justify its stonewalling of a United Nations watchdog investigation into the Arab state's nuclear activities.

The UN nuclear chief said earlier this year that Syria had asked for understanding of its "delicate situation" in response to requests for Syrian cooperation with an International Atomic Energy Agency inquiry into suspected illicit nuclear work.

Syrian President Bashar Assad is fighting a 15-month-old revolt by peaceful protesters and armed insurgents, in which the United Nations says more than 10,000 people have been killed.

Syria "has said that events on the ground in Syria, events that I would note involve the Syrian government's deliberate use of lethal force against civilians, prevent Syria from cooperating with the IAEA", US envoy Robert Wood said.

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