White House holds more briefings on Syria for lawmakers

August 30, 2013 21:18


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WASHINGTON - US President Barack Obama's national security team is holding at least two briefings on Syria for members of Congress on Friday, congressional aides told Reuters, as the administration works to tamp down criticism that it has not properly consulted lawmakers.

At 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT), as Secretary of State John Kerry made a televised address discussing US findings about an apparent chemical weapons attack in the suburbs of Damascus, members of the national security staff were addressing members of the Senate Foreign Relations and Senate Armed Services committees via conference call.

National security officials were due to brief members of the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee and House Foreign Affairs Committee beginning at 2:15 p.m. EDT (1615 GMT), congressional aides said.

Administration officials are weighing their options on how to proceed, including possible missile strikes. Obama has said he does not want to get drawn into a protracted conflict, but wants to ensure that chemical weapons are not used again.

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