At a news conference with Turkish Prime Minister
Obama reiterated his long-standing position that "the use of chemical weapons are something that the civilized world has recognized should be out of bounds."
"But," he added, "this is also an international problem, and it's very much my hope to continue to work with all the various parties involved, including Turkey, to find a solution that brings peace to Syria, stabilizes the region, stabilizes those chemical weapons. But it's not going to be something that the United States does by itself, and I don't think anybody in the region, including the prime minister, would think that U.S. unilateral actions, in and of themselves, would bring about a better outcome inside of -- inside of Syria."
[Updated 12:59 p.m. PDT May 16: Obama’s declarations, beginning last August, that Syria would be crossing a “red line” by using poison gas were interpreted by many to mean that it would trigger
But as proof has accumulated in recent weeks that deadly sarin gas has been released in Syria, Obama has made clear that he wants conclusive proof that the weapons have been used, and that even then would prefer to have the United States respond as part of a group. But Thursday's comments were the most definitive statement of his policy.
U.S. and foreign officials have acknowledged that it is likely to be very difficult to find conclusive proof that Syrian government troops used the gas. Even if that is established, it is not clear that an international coalition will agree on a military response, analysts say.]
Obama also hinted that he had rejected Erdogan’s appeal for
Erdogan reaffirmed that he intends to make a controversial visit to the Gaza Strip next month, but said he will also visit the