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Obama vows to explore diplomatic route on Syria

U.S. President Barack Obama vows to pursue a diplomatic initiative from Russia over Syria's chemical weapons - while voicing skepticism at the plan. SOUNDBITE: U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA, SAYING: "It's too early to tell whether this offer will succeed. And any agreement must verify that the Assad regime keeps its commitments. But this initiative has the potential to remove the threat of chemical weapons without the use of force, particularly because Russia is one of Assad's strongest allies." In an address to the nation from the White House, Obama said Russia's proposal for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to give up chemical weapons - could head off his plan for a limited military strike in Syria. Obama said U.S. and Russian officials would discuss the initiative - and he would talk with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Meanwhile, Obama said he has asked the U.S. Senate to put off a vote requesting the authorization for military force in Syria. SO

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