'Action on Syria red line sends message to Iran'

Deputy FM Elkin says failure to act on Syria chemical weapons will send message to Iran that it can continue nuclear progress.

April 26, 2013 09:49
2 minute read.
A DRILL at the Meir Medical Center in Kfar Saba tests responses to a chemical weapons attack.

chemical weapons drill370 . (photo credit: IDF Spokesperson )

Deputy Foreign Minister Ze'ev Elkin warned Friday that a failure by the international community to act against Syria for using chemical weapons would show Iran that the US does not act when its "red lines" are crossed.

Elkin was speaking in an Army Radio interview a day after US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said that the US intelligence community believes that some chemical weapons, likely sarin gas,

"The Iranians are watching this. There is a question here - When they set a red line, do they act when it is crossed," he added.

"If they do not act after the red line they set was crossed, the Iranians will understand that red lines set by the West are very flexible and they will continue to develop their nuclear program," Elkin warned.

"If until now they tried to ignore our warnings and they thought that Assad had control of the weapons, now they see that the red line has likely been crossed," he stated.

Elkin reiterated Israel's concerns that Assad's chemical weapons could fall into the hands of terrorist entities such as Hezbollah.

"What worries Israel is not who will control Syria, but rather, who will control the chemical weapons stockpile and how we eliminate the possibility of the arms being used all together," he said. "The world is beginning to understand that these chemical weapons are a danger to all."

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