TODAY   |  August 22, 2013

Syrian government denies using chemical weapons

The Syrian government has denied allegations that it used chemical weapons against its own people yesterday. If confirmed, the attack, which killed hundreds of civilians, would be the worst of its kind anywhere in decades. At least 35 nations are calling for the United Nations to investigate, NBC’s Richard Engel reports.

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>>> morning.

>> good morning, guys. the video is very disturbing. the images out of syria as well as the rising death toll after reports of chemical weapons attacks. the syrian government is denying allegations that it gassed its own people. if confirmed, it is the worst case in decades. richard engel is in cairo. richard, good morning.

>> reporter: good morning, natalie. syrian rebels tell us hundreds, perhaps well over 1,000 were killed in a series of chemical attacks yesterday. 35 nations now are calling for a full u.n. investigation. u.n. inspectors are actually in syria right now very close to where these alleged incidents took place, but the investigators are at the four seasons hotels denied access to their areas by the syrian government. if it is proved that chemical weapons were in fact used, that force against the syrian regime should be