Luis Martinez
ABC News
January 18, 2013

The United States will take “all necessary and proper steps” needed to deal with the ongoing hostage situation in Algeria, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told ABC News’ Martha Raddatz in an exclusive interview, although he cautioned that American officials fear the information coming out of the African country is “pretty sketchy.”

Panetta also provided new details about Syria’s mixing of chemical weapons in December and the clearest explanation yet of the Obama administration’s red lines if the Assad regime uses the weapons against its own people.

Panetta was interviewed by Raddatz as he traveled to visit U.S. Army soldiers in Vicenza, Italy. The defense secretary is on a European trip that he has characterized as his final trip overseas while in his post.

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