Russia rejects UN Syria chemical attacks probe

It was the first time an international probe pointed the finger of blame at President Bashar al-Assad’s forces after years of denial from Damascus. (Reuters)

Russia on Thursday dismissed as “unconvincing” the findings of a UN-led investigation showing that Syrian forces had carried out three chemical attacks and said no sanctions should be imposed.

“We believe that the proof is not there for any punitive action to be taken. It’s simply not there,” Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told reporters following a closed-door Security Council meeting.

The joint United Nations-Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) panel has concluded that government forces carried out three chemical attacks on villages in 2014 and 2015.

It was the first time an international probe pointed the finger of blame at President Bashar al-Assad’s forces after years of denial from Damascus.

The latest report by the panel sent to the Security Council last Friday said government helicopters flew from two government controlled air bases to drop chlorine barrel-bombs on the villages of Qmenas, Talmenes and Sarmin, in rebel-held Idlib province.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:48 - GMT 06:48
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