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Pentagon: Syria should hand over chemicals faster

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PAULINE JELINEK | February 27, 2014 12:34 PM EST | AP


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon is urging Syria to move faster on its promise to hand over its chemical weapons.

Defense Department spokesman Col. Steve Warren says so far only one batch of the government's most toxic chemicals has been shipped out of the country. It was mustard gas.

The government led by President Bashir Assad has missed at least two deadlines in the past two months to remove chemicals.

A U.S. cargo ship loaded with equipment to neutralize the chemicals is waiting in Europe to destroy the most dangerous parts of the stockpile. But it will not take the chemicals out to sea for destruction until all of them have been collected for the operation.