According to a U.S. official, the Kerry / Lavrov meetings will be an exploratory sessionto see if it is possible to dismantle Syria’s chemical arsenal amidst the civil war. Additionally, Kerry will push for Syria to take immediate steps to show it is serious about relinquishing its chemical arms. The United States and Russiaare divided over whether the resolution will include a chapter seven mandate which would allow for the use of military force if Syria does not comply with its provisions.
Russian President Vladimir Putin argued against a U.S. military intervention in Syria appealing to the U.S. public in a New York Times op-edWednesday. Meanwhile, fierce clashes have continued in the historic Christian town of Maaloula, despite reports that government forces have taken control. Additionally, Syrian warplanes bombed a main hospitalin northern opposition-held territory on Wednesday. The bombing, in the town of al-Bab, about 19 miles northeast of Aleppo, reportedly killed 11 civilians, including two doctors, and destroyed the emergency and radiology departments of the hospital.