Syria blocks entry of UN chemical weapons inspectors

“Syria regrets that [UN Secretary General Ban] Ki-Moon has yielded to the pressures practiced by countries known for their support to the Syrian bloodshed in order to divert the consultations in this regard from their real context,” the news agency said.

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Ban announced Monday that an advance team is in Cyprus and ready to deploy to Syria within 24 hours if it gets the green light from the government. He urged Assad to allow the mission to investigate all allegations of chemical weapons attacks “without delay, without conditions and without exceptions.”

“I can report that the United Nations investigation mission is now in a position to deploy in Syria in less than 24 hours. All technical and logistical arrangements are in place,” Ban told reporters in the Hague. “Now all we are waiting for is the go-ahead from the Syrian Government for a thorough investigation to determine whether any chemical weapons were used in any location.”

"The longer we wait,” he said, “the harder this essential mission will be."