MOSCOW - Russian President Vladimir Putin says that a plan for Syria to turn over its chemical weapons stockpile will only work if the United States agrees not to use force.
Putin told reporters on Tuesday that the plan "can work, only in the event that we hear that the American side and those who support the U.S.A, in this sense, reject the use of force."
President Barack Obama has thrown his support behind a French resolution to the U.N. Security Council even as he pushes the idea of U.S. airstrikes against Assad's regime if that effort fails.
The resolution would demand that Syria open its chemical weapons program to inspection, place it under international control, and ultimately dismantle it.
Earlier Tuesday, Syria's foreign minister said President Bashar Assad's regime would declare its chemical weapons arsenal and sign the chemical weapons convention.
Walid al-Moallem also said Syria is ready to cooperate fully to implement a Russian proposal to put its chemical weapons arsenal under international control and it will stop producing chemical weapons.
He added that Syria will also place chemical weapons locations in the hands of representatives of Russia, "other countries" and the United Nations.
He spoke Tuesday exclusively to the Al-Mayadeen TV station.
Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry says the proposed Russian deal must be enshrined in a binding U.N. Security Council resolution that sets consequences for Syrian non-compliance.
Kerry said Tuesday that Russian suggestions that the U.N. endorsement come in the form of a non-binding statement from the rotating president of the Security Council would be unacceptable to the Obama administration.
Kerry said the U.S. has to have "a full resolution from the Security Council in order to have confidence that this has the force that it has to have." He added that the resolution must have "consequences if games are played and somebody tries to undermine this."
Kerry's comments came during an online Google+ roundtable.
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