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US, Britain, France request name of pilot who carried out Syrian chemical attack

Published: Updated:

The US, Britain and France have demanded the names of the pilots who carried out the recent chemical attack in Syria.

Their request came as part of the draft resolution, which they submitted on Wednesday during an emergency session at the UN Security Council.

The draft resolution calls for a full investigation into the attack in the early hours of Tuesday in the town of Khan Sheikhoun. At least 72 people were killed in the strike and dozens more were injured.

Syrian Pilot Mohammed al-Hasouri, who took off in his jet from the Shayrat military airport on Tuesday morning, may have not thought that his name may be internationally listed and he will be pursued.

Victim testimonies

According to the testimonies of Khan Sheikhoun residents, Hasouri carried out a similar attack using chemical weapons four days ago in Hama’s countryside in the town of Al-Lataminah.

A local observatory has taken charge of monitoring the regime air force’s activity. On the day of the chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun, it monitored that the same jet which attacked Lataminah – dubbed Quds 1 according to an audio which the Syrians have been circulating – took off.

It was 6:00 a.m. when the jet began to attack Khan Sheikhun in Edleb, northwest of Syria. The attack was thunderous and the one in charge at the observatory said: “It seems the jet is carrying toxic substances.”

Wiretapping communication

These observatories carry out their work by using radars to wiretap the communication among Assad’s forces. Then they use wireless devices to broadcast the type of the jet, its time of departure and the raids it carried out.

There are rotating shift workers to carry out this job throughout the day. They also use different channels to broadcast the information they have to members of the armed opposition in Idlib’s countryside.

The identity of the pilot is not established yet. However, according to the observatory, opposition members who secretly work in regime-held areas said Hasouri was the pilot who carried out the attack, adding that he hails from Talkalakh in west Homs.