Syria Admits Having 41 Chemical-Arms Facilities

Oct. 29, 2013

OPCW Director General Ahmet Üzümcü speaks on Oct. 11 during a press conference in The Hague. He reportedly said Syria has declared having 23 chemical-weapons sites at a total of 41 facilities -- a detail that could explain discrepancies in measurements of the country's chemical arsenal (Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images).
OPCW Director General Ahmet Üzümcü speaks on Oct. 11 during a press conference in The Hague. He reportedly said Syria has declared having 23 chemical-weapons sites at a total of 41 facilities — a detail that could explain discrepancies in measurements of the country’s chemical arsenal (Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images).

The Syrian government has admitted to having 41 chemical-weapons facilities at 23 sites, according to a Associated Press report on Monday that might resolve questions over the country’s disclosure about its chemical arsenal.

Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime submitted a “formal initial declaration” of its chemical-weapons program to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons last Thursday. However, it was not immediately clear if the confidential document stated that the country has more than the 23 chemical sites it identified in a September preliminary declaration.

U.S. officials believe the Assad regime has at least 45 chemical-arms sites, and questioned if the new Syrian declaration — announced on Sunday by the Hague-based oversight body — was incomplete, or if the government had consolidated its chemical-arms stocks.

A report from OPCW Director General Ahmet Üzümcü — described by news outlets including AP, the New York Times and the London Telegraph — could explain the discrepancy.

Syria declared having 23 chemical-weapons sites at a total of 41 facilities — made up of 18 structures for producing chemical arms and 12 for storing them, along with eight mobile units for filling chemical weapons and three related facilities, Üzümcü reportedly said in the document he submitted to the U.N. Security Council. The Middle Eastern country admitted to having roughly 1,000 metric tons of “Category 1” chemical weapons, which are mainly precursors rarely used for peaceful purposes, along with approximately 290 tons of “Category 2” chemicals that are still considered toxic and dangerous. Syria also acknowledged possession of 1,230 unfilled munitions that could be used to deliver the poison, Üzümcü wrote.

“In addition, the Syrian authorities have reported finding two cylinders not belonging to them, which are believed to contain chemical weapons,” Üzümcü said.

Despite the disclosure of this report, U.S. officials have not ruled out the possibility that Syria has not fully disclosed all of its chemical development, storage and testing locations, according to the Times.

Assad acknowledged that he possessed chemical weapons and agreed to their destruction in September, shortly after a nerve-gas attack on civilians just outside Damascus spurred international condemnation and the threat of a U.S. military strike. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons then launched an ambitious effort to inventory and eliminate the Syrian chemical arsenal by mid-2014.

The organization announced on Monday that international chemical-arms inspectors completed their first round of verification activities in Syria, but were not able to visit two of the 23 sites because of security concerns in the war-battered nation.

http://www.nti.org/gsn/article/syria-admits-having-41-chemical-arms-facilities/?mgs1=495bdyiOSe

 

Starbucks reneges on guns

Starbucks CEO says guns not welcome in stores

 

Starbucks is becoming a gun-free zone.

After months of wrangling over the highly-emotional issue, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz late Tuesday announced that guns are no longer permitted in Starbucks stores — or in Starbucks outdoor seating areas.

Schultz made the comments in an open letter to his “Fellow Americans” that was posted on the company’s website.

In an interview with USA TODAY, also Tuesday, Schultz says: “The presence of a weapon in our stores is unsettling and upsetting for many of our customers.”

But, to be clear, Starbucks will not slap an outright ban on guns, he says, because enforcing such a ban “would potentially require our partners to confront armed customers.”

Full-page newspaper advertisements announcing the change will appear in Thursday’s editions of USA TODAY, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.

For Starbucks, which has been embraced by the gun lobby for permitting guns in stores in those parts of more than 40 states that allow them, it’s a major change of policy certain to have immediate blow-back from pro-gun enthusiasts.

The move comes just days after the mass-killing left 13 dead at Washington’s Navy Yard, but Schultz insists the timing of the policy change is unrelated. In fact, he says, the company thought about postponing the announcement after Monday’s massacre, but opted to move ahead.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2013/09/18/starbucks-coffee-guns-ceo-schultz/2829937/

 

In my state they can put up signs and do whatever they want, but they can’t ban them.  If you’re carrying concealed then “Concealed means Concealed”.  Keep it that way.  If they ask you to leave if you’re open carrying then you could be charged with trespassing if you refuse.  (State of Colorado)  Of course that also depends on whether you’re in certain cities too.  Boulder, Denver and others still try to hassle people carrying weapons.