U.N. chemical weapons experts pull out of Syria

8:11 AM, Aug 31, 2013   |    comments
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A convoy of United Nations (UN) vehicles leave a hotel in Damascus on August 28, 2013 carrying UN inspectors travelling to a site in the Syrian capital of alleged chemical weapons attacks, a day after suspending their mission over safety concerns. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

USA TODAY -- U.N. weapons inspectors have left Syria ahead of schedule amid high anticipation of an imminent U.S. attack.

MORE | White House releases report detailing Syria chemical attack

The Associated Press reports the team of inspectors was seen crossing into Lebanon early Saturday. They carried out their final inspection Friday.

Their departure had been planned for about 9 a.m. Saturday (2 a.m. ET), but NBC News reports they left their hotel in Damascus about 5:30 a.m. in vehicles headed to Beirut, Lebanon.

The weapons inspectors' exit comes after Secretary of State John Kerry laid out the U.S. case for war Friday.

"History would judge us all extraordinarily harshly if we turned a blind eye to a dictator's wanton use of weapons of mass destruction against all warnings, against all common understanding of decency," Kerry said.

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