|Senator John McCain comments on attacks in Benghazi and other activity in the middle east on CBS's "Face the Nation", in Washington, September 16, 2012. (REUTERS/CBS News/Chris Usher/Handout)
HALIFAX — U.S. Senators are calling for the West to establish a no-fly zone in Syria, where the civil war has killed more than 39,000.
U.S. Senator John McCain said Saturday he was "ashamed" of the lack of response from the U.S. as the carnage continues in Syria.
"Everything bad that was predicted if we intervene with a no-fly zone has now happened because we didn't intervene ... jihadists are now flowing into Syria in larger numbers," McCain, alongside Senator Mark Udall, said on the second day of the International Security Forum in Halifax.
Sending in Americans troops, according to McCain, would not be supported by Americans despite Syria's prominent land war.
Meanwhile, Syrian rebels seized control of a major airport in Deir Ezzor province on the border of Iraq, reported U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. At least 47 soldiers and civilians were killed in Syria on Saturday, the watchdog's website said.
Violence in the Middle East was a prominent topic at the conference, hosted by Defence Minister Peter MacKay, including the escalating conflict between Israel and Hamas.
McCain joined with other senators to urge for restraint, while retired Israeli brigadier general Shlomo Brom described the situation as so-called "escalation dominance," a term for a stage in conflict where one side or the other fears to strike for fear what could happen as a result.
The fourth annual conference drew hundreds of military leaders and academics to discuss major global security challenges.
Disgraced ex-CIA director gen. David Petraeus, whose extra-marital affair has made worldwide headlines, was scheduled to speak but backed out due to the ongoing scandal.