Published: Wed, May 16, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

OPCW confirms chlorine use in February attack in Syria

OPCW confirms chlorine use in February attack in Syria

The document was also submitted to the Security Council through the United Nations secretary-general.

While the OPCW didn't lay the blame with any one party, it said in a report released Tuesday that interviews with witnesses, the collection of environmental samples and the symptoms that patients exhibited in the aftermath allowed it to conclude that chlorine was dropped from two cylinders on the Saraqib area on February 4, 2018.

The West blames for the chemical attack in Idlib on the Syrian troops. The OPCW does not have the document establishes who is responsible for the use of banned chemical weapons, writes Reuters.

"The FFM determined that chlorine was released from cylinders by mechanical impact in the Al Talil neighbourhood of Saraqib".

Environmental samples also "demonstrated the unusual presence of chlorine in the local environment", said the organization, based in The Hague.

In October, a joint OPCW-UN panel found the Syrian air force was behind a sarin gas attack on the then opposition-held village of Khan Sheikhun in April 2017 that left scores dead.

Eleven people had to be treated for breathing difficulties on February 4 after Syrian regime raids on Saraqeb, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at the time.

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The Syrian government produced a three-page denial of responsibility, and failed to answer a further set of OPCW questions sent on 14 March.

"Such acts contradict the unequivocal prohibition against chemical weapons".

In the statement, the OPCW's Director-General Ahmet Uzumcu was quoted as saying: "I strongly condemn the continued use of toxic chemicals as weapons by anyone, for any reason, and in any circumstances".

The team exhumed bodies as well as gathering over 100 environmental samples which are being analysed in different OPCW-designated labs. The scale of the attack prompted the UK, France and the U.S. to mount cruise missile strikes on what it said were Syrian government chemical weapons sites.

Zakharova added that Moscow believed the OPCW findings "will confirm the baselessness of the contrived and unproven allegations against Damascus".

Poison gas was released from cylinders and used as chemical weapons.

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