(CBS News) Syria’s President Bashar Assad denied his regime’s use of chemical weapons in a wide-ranging interview with CBS News’ Charlie Rose. Assad issued a chilling warning for theU.S. to “expect everythingin response to a potential strike on Syria and repeatedly told Rose the Obama administration lacks irrefutable evidence to back up charges of chemical weapons use.
The White House says more than 1,400 Syrian civilians were killed in a chemical weapons attack outside Damascus on August 21 using sarin gas.
Assad said he had no knowledge of the chemical attack allegedly carried out by his own military, and took aim at Secretary of State John Kerry for making the charges without “a single shred” of evidence.
“We– we’re not in the area where… the alleged chemical attack was happened, as is alleged. We’re not sure that anything happened,” Assad insisted.
“Our soldiers in another area were attacked chemically, our soldiers. They went to the hospital, as casualties because of chemical weapons. But in the area where they said the government used chemical weapons, we only had video and we only have pictures and allegations. We’re not there. Our forces — our police, our institutions don’t exist. How can you talk about what happened if you don’t have evidences? We’re not like the American administration. We’re not social media administration or government. We are the government that deals with reality.”