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Russia conducting its own investigation into Syria chemical weapons attack

May 13, 2020 at 2:00 pm

A Syrian child receives treatment after Assad Regime forces carried out a chemical attack in Idlib, Syria on 4 April 2017 [Bahjat Najar/Anadolu Agency]

Russia is carrying out its own investigation into the alleged 2017 chemical weapons attacks in Syria, following last month’s conclusion by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) which attributed them to the Syrian Arab Air Force. The findings were condemned by Damascus as “misleading” containing “false and fabricated conclusions” and dismissed by Moscow.

The OPCW’s 82-page report was published on 8 April and found that the Syrian air force had dropped bombs containing either chlorine or sarin gases on a hospital and open farmland in the central town of Latamneh, killing three and injuring over 70 people.

READ: Syria, where chemical weapons watchdogs become weaponised

Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, told reporters yesterday that the conclusions of Moscow’s investigations will be shared with the world.

“We are conducting our own expert investigation and we will share its results with you and international community,” Nebenzia said during a video briefing.

The newly established identification team by the OPCW was considered by Russia to have sacrificed its integrity in serving Western geopolitical interests, arguing that the investigative body violates the Chemical Weapons Convention as only the UN Security Council has such powers, reports Sputnik.

READ: UNSC: Report on Assad’s use of chemical weapons in Syria ‘distressing’

Chemical attack on Syria - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Chemical attack in Syria – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]