Western forces prepare response should Syria use chemical weapons

European officials have warned that Western powers are preparing a tough response if Syrian President Bashar al Assad's regime deploys chemical or biological weapons in its civil war.

Syria's leadership has stated that if they are attacked from the outside they could use chemical or biological weapons, the Washington Post reports.

If al Assad's forces do use such weapons, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told RMC radio that their response "would be massive and blistering," the Washington Post reports.

Likewise, Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague has asked the U.N. if it could begin preparations so that the U.N. could quickly deploy experts to ensure that it any use of chemical weapons being used or moved is reported.

The U.S., France and Britain have been very clear to al Assad that any use of chemical weapons could prompt a change in their response to Syria's civil war. President Barack Obama has called the issue a "red line" for the U.S.

Britain will not intervene militarily in Syria, according to David Cameron, though he said he will revisit that stance if chemical weapons are used, according to the Washington Post.

Fabius said that Russia and China were "of the same position," though they have repeatedly used their veto powers in the U.N. Security Council to block U.S. and Arab-backed action that could have led to sanctions against Assad's regime.

Hague said that Russia's position will only change if the situation on the ground changes dramatically.