Diplomatic talks to end Syrian war make progress

Russia's foreign minister, the U.N. peace envoy to Syria and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discussed the war in Syria on Thursday while U.S. legislators considered military action to prevent chemical weapon use.

Sergey Lavrov, Lakhdar Brahimi and Clinton met for approximately 40 minutes on the sidelines of a human rights conference in Ireland to discuss strategy the international community could use to end the 21-month civil war, ABCLocal reports.

"We have been trying hard to work with Russia to try to stop the bloodshed in Syria and start a political transition for a post-Assad Syrian future," Clinton said, according to ABCLocal. "Events on the ground in Syria are accelerating and we see that in many different ways. The pressure against the regime in and around Damascus seems to be increasing. We've made it very clear what our position is with respect to chemical weapons, and I think we will discuss that and many other aspects of what is needed to end the violence."

In Washington, some senators talked about the possibility of military action against Bashar al-Assad's regime to prevent the use of chemical weapons such as sarin gas.

"(The U.S. should) be ready to do whatever is necessary to prevent (the use of chemical weapons) including the option of military intervention," Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) said, according to ABCLocal.

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said this week that intelligence reports are raising concerns that Syria's president could resort to using his chemical weapons arsenal.

"I think there is no question that we remain very concerned, very concerned that, as the opposition advances, in particular in Damascus, that regime might very well consider the use of chemical weapons," Panetta said, according to ABCLocal.