The West wants the deal enshrined in a UN resolution backed by the threat of military force, but Russia objects.
Referring to the issue of destroying Syria’s stockpiles of chemical weapons, Mr Assad said it was “a very complicated operation, technically”.
“And it needs a lot of money, some estimates (say) about a billion [dollars].”
And when asked whether he would be willing to hand over chemical weapons to the US, President Assad said: “It needs about one billion. It is very detrimental to the environment. If the American administration is ready to pay this money and take the responsibility of bringing toxic materials to the United States, why don’t they do it?”