Senate holds first hearing on Syria - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Senate holds first hearing on Syria

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Obama administration is now saying that the number of chemical weapons attacks by Syrian government forces is in the "teens" and that rebels put the number even higher.


The figure cited by Secretary of State John Kerry is significantly higher than any previous public estimate from the United States. Before last month's suspected chemical attack in the Damascus suburbs, U.S. officials had spoken of several earlier incidents. But no one had put the total in double figures.

Kerry told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime would definitely use chemical weapons again unless the U.S. takes military action.

President Barack Obama is seeking Congress' authorization to retaliate against Assad by using force.

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WASHINGTON (WKOW) --- The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is holding its first hearing on Syria Tuesday.

Lawmakers are now in debate on deciding whether to authorize the U.S. military to react to the Syria crisis.

Secretary of State John Kerry, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey are expected to testify Tuesday.

A vote on whether to take action will not happen until next week when Congress is back from recess.

President Obama and Administration officials are holding meetings about the possibility of action this week.

Catch the live stream of this story on WKOW.com/live

We will continue to update this story as the hearing is underway.

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