Author Topic: Russian inquiry to UN: Rebels, not Army, behind Syria Aleppo chemical attack  (Read 3913 times)

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Offline mayya

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http://rt.com/news/syria-chemical-attack-rebels-848/

Russian inquiry to UN: Rebels, not Army, behind Syria Aleppo chemical attack

Published time: July 09, 2013 16:22
Edited time: July 09, 2013 17:41



In this image made available by the Syrian News Agency on March 19, 2013, medics check a woman at a hospital in the Khan al-Assal region in the northern Aleppo province, as Syria's government accused rebel forces of using chemical weapons (AFP Photo / SANA)


Samples taken at the site where the chemical weapons were allegedly used indicate that it was rebels - not the Syrian army - behind the attack, Russia’s UN envoy Vladimir Churkin has said.

Russia has handed over the analyzed samples to the UN, he added.



Russia’s UN envoy Vladimir Churkin (RIA Novosti / Ruslan Krivobok)

“I have just passed the analysis of samples taken at the site of the chemical attack to the UN Secretary General (Ban Ki-moon),” Churkin said on Tuesday.

Evidence studied by Russian scientists indicates that a projectile carrying the deadly nerve agent sarin was most likely fired at Khan al-Assal by the rebels, Churkin stressed.

“It was determined that on March 19 the rebels fired an unguided missile Bashair-3 at the town of Khan al-Assal, which has been under government control. The results of the analysis clearly show that the shell used in Khan al-Assal was not factory made and that it contained sarin,” he said.

More than 30 people died in the Khan al-Assal incident in the northern province of Aleppo last March. Damascus was the first to ask for the UN investigation, accusing opposition fighters of launching a chemical weapon attack. Syrian rebel groups denied the accusations, in turn blaming government forces.

However, the UN investigation has largely become stalled after a group of Western nations insisted on launching an inquiry into a separate case of alleged chemical weapons use in Homs in December 2012. The inquiry requires access to military objects, which Damascus has been unwilling to give.

enrica

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Mmh... I've already heard this.

I'd like to see an inquiry made not by Russia or US or EU who are all involved and pro one side or the other, but a neutral Human Rights report... mmh I dunno... from another nation or an indipendent org.

Offline mayya

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Syrian rebels' Damascus chemical cache found by Assad army
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2013, 19:59:34 PM »
http://rt.com/news/damascus-syria-chemical-weapons-082/

Syrian rebels' Damascus chemical cache found by Assad army - State TV
 
Published time: July 14, 2013 13:55
Edited time: July 14, 2013 17:44

Storage bags containing “corrosive” substances in the Damascus area of Jobar were found by the Syrian Army

link to  video : http://rt.com/news/damascus-syria-chemical-weapons-082/

 

The Syrian army has discovered a storehouse belonging to rebels in the Damascus area of Jobar, where toxic chemical substances - including chlorine - have been produced and kept, State TV reported.

Military sources reported that the militants "were preparing to fire mortars in the suburbs of the capital and were going to pack missiles with chemical warheads."

A video shot by RT’s sister channel Russia Al Youm shows an old, partly ruined building which was set up as a laboratory. After entering the building, Syrian Army officers found scores of canisters and bags laid on the floor and tables. According to a warning sign on the bags, the “corrosive” substance was made in Saudi Arabia.

On July 7, the Syrian army confiscated “281 barrels filled with dangerous, hazardous chemical materials” that they found at a cache belonging to rebels in the city of Banias. The chemicals included monoethylene glycol and polyethylene glycol.

Syrian UN Ambassador Bashar Ja’afari said that the chemicals were “capable of destroying a whole city, if not the whole country."

Chief UN chemical weapons investigator Ake Sellstrom and UN disarmament chief Angela Kane are expected in Damascus for talks on Monday, following an invitation from the Syrian government.


Storage bags containing “corrosive” substances were found by the Syrian Army in the Damascus area of Jobar.

Earlier this week, Russia submitted to the UN its analysis of samples taken in Aleppo, where chemical weapons were allegedly used in March.

Russia’s findings indicated that it was rebels - not the Syrian army - behind the Khan al-Assal incident, in which more than 30 people died.

“It was determined that on March 19 the rebels fired an unguided missile Bashair-3 at the town of Khan al-Assal, which has been under government control. The results of the analysis clearly show that the shell used in Khan al-Assal was not factory made and that it contained sarin,” Russia’s UN envoy, Vitaly Churkin, said.

Syrian rebel groups denied the accusations, in turn blaming government forces.

The United States cast doubt on the Russian analysis. In response, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov underlined that the samples of the chemical weapons had been taken at the very place where they were used and were delivered by Russian experts rather than passed through third-party hands.

“We submitted a full set of documents [to the UN]. That’s over 80 pages, including photographs and precise geographic coordinates [of places where samples were taken], procedures and results,” Lavrov pointed out. “We also guarantee that the samples were taken by experts who did not let go of them till they were delivered to the laboratory.”

 

Storage bags containing “corrosive” substances in the Damascus area of Jobar were found by the Syrian Army

Damascus was the first to accuse opposition fighters of launching a chemical weapon attack, and the first to request the UN investigation.

The investigation became stuck after a group of Western nations insisted on launching an inquiry into a separate case of alleged chemical weapons use in Homs in December 2012. The investigation requires access to military objects, which Damascus has been unwilling to give.

So far, the UN has not found any conclusive evidence proving that either side of the conflict used chemical weapons.

Meanwhile, the US, UK and France have submitted several reports in which they claim there is evidence that the Assad government used chemical weapons.



Offline mayya

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http://sana.sy/eng/21/2013/07/14/492283.htm

Army units discover chemical materials factory inside a terrorists' den near Damascus


Jul 14, 2013



Damascus, (SANA) - A unit of the armed forces discovered a factory to manufacture and store the toxic chemical weapons inside a terrorists' den in the area surrounding al-Manashir roundabout in Joubar neighborhood in Damascus Countryside.

An official source told SANA that an army unit seized amounts of toxic chemical materials, in addition to seizing chlorine substances in containers, some of them foreign-made, while others Saudi-made.

The source added that the seized weapons included weapons and scores of mortar shells which were prepared to be filled with chemical materials.






Offline mayya

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Russia Claims Syrian Rebels Used Chemical Weapons
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2013, 20:36:03 PM »
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/09/russia-syria-chemical-weapons_n_3568731.html

 Russia Claims Syrian Rebels Used Chemical Weapons


By PETER JAMES SPIELMANN and EDITH M. LEDERER 07/09/13 07:03 PM ET EDT AP
 

UNITED NATIONS — Russia's U.N. ambassador said Tuesday that Russian experts determined that Syrian rebels made sarin nerve gas and used it in a deadly chemical weapon attack outside Aleppo in March.

Ambassador Vitaly Churkin blamed opposition fighters for the March 19 attack in the government-controlled Aleppo suburb of Khan al-Assal, which he said killed 26 people, including 16 military personnel, and injured 86 others.

The rebels have blamed the government for the attack. The U.S. Britain and France have said they have seen no evidence to indicate that the opposition has acquired or used chemical weapons.

In Washington, White House spokesman Jay Carney said "We have yet to see any evidence that backs up the assertion that anybody besides the Syrian government has had the ability to use chemical weapons or has used chemical weapons."

Churkin told reporters after delivering an 80-page report to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that the Assad regime asked Russia, its closest ally, to investigate the attack after a U.N. team of chemical weapons experts was unable to enter the country in a dispute over the probe's scope.

Acting U.S. Ambassador Rosemary DiCarlo said Syrian President Bashar Assad should now allow U.N. chemical weapons experts into the country to conduct an investigation of the Khan al-Assal incident as well as other allegations of chemical weapons use by the U.S., U.K., and France.

The samples taken from the impact site of the gas-laden projectile were analyzed at a Russian laboratory certified by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, Churkin said.

He said the analysis showed that the unguided Basha'ir-3 rocket that hit Khan al-Assal was not a military-standard chemical weapon.

Churkin said the results indicate it "was not industrially manufactured and was filled with sarin." He said the samples indicated the sarin and the projectile were produced in makeshift "cottage industry" conditions, and the projectile "is not a standard one for chemical use."

The absence of chemical stabilizers, which are needed for long-term storage and later use, indicated its "possibly recent production," Churkin said.

"Therefore, there is every reason to believe that it was the armed opposition fighters who used the chemical weapons in Khan al-Assal," Churkin said.

"According to information at our disposal," he added, "the production of `Basha'ir 3' unguided projectiles was started in February 2013 by the so-called `Basha'ir al-Nasr' brigade affiliated with the Free Syrian Army."

On Monday, Syria invited Ake Sellstrom, head of the U.N. fact-finding mission on allegations of chemical weapons use in Syria, and U.N. disarmament chief Angela Kane to visit Damascus for foreign-minister level talks on conducting a probe of just the Khan al-Assal attack.

The Russian ambassador strongly backed the idea, calling it "a promising process" that hopefully will lead to an investigation.

Britain, France and the United States have provided the secretary-general with information on other alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria. Ban has repeatedly said he wants a broader investigation than just Khan al-Assal.

"We support a thorough investigation of all credible allegations," Churkin said, but added that Russian experts "were not impressed at all" by the material provided to them by the U.K., U.S. and France.

At the White House, Carney said that Syria's President "Bashar al-Assad called for a U.N. investigation into the use of chemical weapons and then he blocked the ability of the United Nations to conduct that investigation. The way to answer this question is to allow the United Nations to investigate."

President Barack Obama's administration says it has "high confidence" that Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces have killed up to 150 people with sarin gas.

In a letter to the secretary-general on June 14, then-U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice said the U.S. had determined that sarin was used in the March 19 attack on Khan al-Assal and also in an April 13 attack on the Aleppo neighborhood of Shaykh Maqsud. She said unspecified chemicals, possibly including chemical warfare agents, were used May 14 in an attack on Qasr Abu Samrah and in a May 23 attack on Adra.

The use of a chemical weapon crossed Obama's "red line" for escalating U.S. involvement in the conflict and prompted the decision to send arms and ammunition to the opposition, not just humanitarian aid and non-lethal material like armored vests and night goggles.

Churkin said Russia plans to provide the 80-page report to the U.S., U.K. and France, and "I hope they find it persuasive." But he said it will not be made public.

U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky had no immediate comment on the issue, noting that the Russian ambassador had delivered the "weighty and quite technical" report only minutes earlier. He said the Department of Disarmament Affairs would study it and provide guidance to the secretary-general.

Offline mayya

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UN accepts Syria invitation to investigate use of chemical weapons
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2013, 21:24:02 PM »
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/07/11/313268/un-accepts-syria-invitation/

UN accepts Syria invitation to investigate use of chemical weapons
 

Takfiri militants in Syria (file photo)
Thu Jul 11, 2013 4:27AM
 
 

The United Nations has accepted an invitation by the Syrian government for two senior UN officials to discuss allegations of using chemical weapons.



On July 8, Syrian Ambassador to the UN Bashar Ja’afari said Swedish scientist Ake Sellstrom and UN High Representative for Disarmament Angela Kane were invited to visit Syria over the issue of chemical weapons.

Martin Nesirky, spokesman for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, confirmed the invitation on Wednesday.

Nesirky said that the two had accepted the invitation “with a view to completing the consultations on the modalities of cooperation required for the proper, safe and efficient conduct of the UN mission to investigate allegations of the use of chemical weapons in Syria.”

On July 10, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that evidence shows that foreign-backed Takfiri militants in Syria have used chemical weapons containing shell and sarin.

    “According to our additional information, these shells and the substance were made last February in the Syrian territory which at that time was under the control of the Free Syrian Army and made by one of the affiliated armed groups,” Lavrov stated.


The remarks by the Russian foreign minister came a day after Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said that firsthand evidence suggests that the militants, not the Syrian government, had manufactured sarin nerve gas and used it during an attack near the northwestern city of Aleppo in March.

The UK, France, and the United States claim the Syrian government has used chemical weapons.

However, Syria says the militants have used chemical weapons on several occasions, including an attack in the region of Khan al-Assal in Aleppo Province on March 19, where over two dozen people died.

Foreign-sponsored militancy has taken its toll on the lives of many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security personnel, since March 2011.

SZH/HSN