the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Readout of the President’s Meeting with the National Security Council Regarding the Reported Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria

President Obama convened a meeting of his National Security Council today to discuss the reported use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government on Wednesday, August 21 near Damascus.  In coordination with international partners and mindful of the dozens of contemporaneous witness accounts and record of the symptoms of those killed, the U.S. intelligence community continues to gather facts to ascertain what occurred.  The President also received a detailed review of a range of potential options he had requested be prepared for the United States and the international community to respond to the use of chemical weapons.

Participants in today’s meeting included:

The Vice President

Secretary of State John Kerry

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel

White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough

U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Samantha Power

National Security Advisor Susan Rice

White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper

Director of the Central Intelligence Agency John Brennan

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey

Deputy Attorney General James Cole

Deputy National Security Advisor Antony Blinken

Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Lisa Monaco

Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications Benjamin Rhodes

National Security Advisor to the Vice President Jacob Sullivan