UN chemical weapons inspectors are scheduled to return to Syria within weeks to continue their investigation, following the release of their initial report on Monday. The return trip has many questioning whether the global fixation on chemical weapons is overshadowing the ongoing use of conventional weapons in Syria.
Khalid Saleh, Head of the Media Office for the Syrian National Council, joined HuffPost Live’s Ahmed Shihab-Eldin to discuss whether Syria’s chemical weapons are receiving a disproportionate amount of attention.
“There is a sad reality that we are dealing with in Syria,” said Saleh. “The whole Syrian crisis has been summarized in Assad’s use of chemical weapons. Everybody seems to have forgotten that Assad has killed over 110,000 people. ”
Many Syrians have voiced similar frustration with the global focus on chemical weapons. The debate on chemical weapons has even become a source of satire. A political cartoon by Gary Clement in the National Post shows Syrians running from bombs and grenades saying, “ Yay! No more chemical weapons!”
Many are concerned that by failing to address Syria’s conventional weapon use, the UN is tacitly condoning Assad’s use of cluster bombs and mass shootings.
"The world is telling [Assad], 'Listen, you’re allowed to kill as many Syrians [as you want] as long as you don’t use chemical weapons,'" Saleh said.