December 12, 2013
Syria strike due in days, West tells opposition
Western powers told the Syrian opposition to expect a strike against President Bashar al-Assad's forces within days, according to sources who attended a meeting between envoys and the Syrian National Coalition in Istanbul.
"The opposition was told in clear terms that action to deter further use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime could come as early as in the next few days, and that they should still prepare for peace talks at Geneva," one of the sources who was at the meeting on Monday explained to news agency Reuters.
US defence minister Chuck Hagel confirmed on the same day that forces from the nation are ready to move immediately should an attack be ordered.
"We have moved assets in place to be able to fulfill and comply with whatever option the president wishes to take," Hagel said during a trip to Brunei.
Asked if the US military was ready to respond just "like that," Hagel said: "We are ready to go, like that."