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— Syria has the "biggest chemical weapons arsenal in the world," which it could use to threaten the Jewish state, Israel's deputy chief of the general staff has warned.
"Syria has built up the biggest chemical weapons arsenal in the world and has missiles and rockets capable of reaching any part of Israeli territory," Major General Yair Naveh said in remarks delivered Sunday night and carried on Israeli military radio on Monday.
Naveh pointed to the deadly crackdown on anti-government protesters being waged by President Bashar al-Assad and his forces, saying it was proof that Syria would show no restraint in any attack on Israel.
"The Syrians who treat their people that way will do the same to us if they have the opportunity," he said.
Israel has been raising the alarm for months over Syria's chemical weapons stockpiles, with the head of the army's northern command warning they could end up in the hands of Hezbollah, Lebanon's Shiite militia group.
United Nations monitors in the Syrian city of Homs say government forces appear to be using a surveillance drone to target buildings, as violence killed 52 people across the country on Monday.
UN monitors have been trying to get into Homs for the last two days but say it is still too dangerous to go in.
BBC journalist Paul Danahar says there has been heavy mortar fire in Homs as government troops use a surveillance drone to look for targets.
"One UN observer told me if I listened carefully, I could hear the whirring sound of an aerial surveillance drone which has been looking for targets which the government can then attack," he said