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Putin demands 'convincing' evidence of Syria chemical attack

world Updated: Sep 05, 2013 02:59 IST
Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned the United States against any military action on Syria without UN approval, saying it would be an aggression.

In an interview with the Channel 1 TV and posted on the Kremlin website Wednesday, Putin reinforced his demand that the Obama administration needed approval from the UN Security Council before taking action.

"It must be presented to the UN Security Council if there is evidence that chemical weapons were used and by the government forces," he said ahead of a G20 summit in St. Petersburg, Xinhua reported.

Putin said Russia would take decisive and serious action over Syria if clear evidence of the use of mass destruction weapons exists.

If there was clear proof of what weapons were used and who used them, Russia "will be ready to act in the most decisive and serious way," Putin said.

"Only the UN Security Council can give approval for the use of force against another state," Putin said.

"Any other ways to justify the use of force against another sovereign and independent state are unacceptable and cannot be qualified as anything other than aggression," Putin said.

In an interview apparently aimed at presenting a more pragmatic face to the world ahead of the G20 summit, Putin confirmed that Russia had delivered some components of sophisticated S-300 missile systems to Syria.

But he revealed for the first time deliveries had now been halted.

"We have delivered separate components but the whole delivery has not been completed and for the moment we have suspended it," Putin said.

Meanwhile, he said Russia did not intend and would not engage in any conflicts in other countries.

He noted that Russia had delivered some components of S-300 air defence system to Syria according to a previous contract, "but the supplies have now been suspended".