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U.S. House Democrat Chris Van Hollen tells CNN’s Amanpour: Obama would have 30 days for chemical weapons plan before military force

September 10th, 2013
03:44 PM ET

By Mick Krever, CNN

U.S. President Barack Obama would have 30 days to work out a “credible plan” on Syria’s chemical weapons before he would be allowed to use force under a new proposed House resolution, House Democrat Chris Van Hollen told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday.

The revision comes on the back of fast-moving developments over a Russian plan to have Syria turn over control of its chemical weapons to an international body, which Van Hollen called a “very positive development.”

“There is this opportunity to accomplish our goal,” the House Democrat said, which he described as preventing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from using chemical weapons again.

“We all have an obligation to take this seriously,” Van Hollen told Amanpour. “But we also have an obligation to make sure that this is not a distraction.”

To that end, he said, a proposed House resolution would allow the president to use military action if after 30 days there were no agreement.

“I do think it’s important to have a backstop of a credible use of force,” Van Hollen said.

“If after thirty days the president says that we have either secured that chemical stockpile or that’s there’s a credible plan to do it, then you would not proceed with limited force,” he told Amanpour. “But if he makes another determination, he would be allowed to go forward.”

Any military strikes, he said, would need “to be very limited.”


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Latest Episode • Syria
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Emanuel Ravelli

    Not sure who blinked first: Obama, Assad, or Putin. Any agreement involving Russia trust is untrustworthy. The White House may have dodged a bullet… for now. Every moved deadline decreases military options and effectiveness. And innocent people are still dying.

    September 10, 2013 at 4:11 pm | Reply
  2. Peace

    Senate asked to delay their vote as well Congress.Russia says they will provide missile shield if US attacks Syria. Hillary Clinton loud and clear ! Diplomacy is in the best interests of United States. Ya think ! We aren't interested in World War 111. The Rush talk radio show today had Hillary Clinton's message confused but finally played a clip that was clear so we could understand what her EXPERIENCE to listen directed in message via media. Get her message clear and don't get it screwed up again !

    September 10, 2013 at 5:36 pm | Reply
  3. Amati Annabels

    The world has to get behind united states and fight for the wrights of syrian people.

    September 11, 2013 at 9:54 am | Reply
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