Syria contingency plans under way: US commander
WASHINGTON (AP) - The top US military commander in Europe said on Tuesday that several Nato countries are working on contingency plans for possible military action to end the two-year civil war in Syria as President Bashar Assad's regime accused US-backed Syrian rebels of using chemical weapons.
The Obama administration rejected the Assad claim as a sign of desperation by a besieged government intent on drawing attention from its war atrocities - some 70,000 dead, more than 1 million refugees and 2.5 million people internally displaced.
A US official said there was no evidence that either Assad forces or the opposition had used chemical weapons in an attack in northern Syria.
The Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Mr Mike Rogers, said there was a "high probability" that the Assad government had used chemical weapons, although it was not clear whether he was referring to the attack in northern Syria.