Jordan: We can handle Syrian chemical threats

Jordan said on Sunday that it is prepared to handle any chemical weapon threat posed by its neighbor, the warring Syria, and that it will not enter any alliances to protect itself.

Samih Maaytah, Jordan's information minister, did not provide details on Jordan's ability to stop a chemical attack during an interview on Sunday. Other Jordanian officials said that U.S. and British military experts provided the country with training to protect civilians in case of a chemical attack, ANI reports.

Maaytah said that the Syrian crisis has put pressure on the country's infrastructure, with approximately 275,000 refugees from Syria now living in Jordan.

Last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Jordan's King Abdullah secretly met in Amman to talk about the threat of Syrian chemical weapons ending up with Islamist extremists.

Jordan, the U.S. and other countries expressed concerns that Bashar al-Assad, Syria's president, could use chemical weapons as part of an effort to save his regime.

Footage and other evidence recently surfaced showing that al-Assad's regime used gas and toxic liquids against rebels. Western intelligence sources said that Syria used chemical weapons against the rebel forces no more than 19 times in the past few months, Ynetnews reports.

More than 44,000 people have been killed during the 21-month conflict and estimates peg the potential death toll at 100,000 by the end of 2013 without intervention, CNN reports.