Published: Wed, May 16, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

Chlorine 'likely' used in February chemical attack in Syria, watchdog says

Chlorine 'likely' used in February chemical attack in Syria, watchdog says

OPCW is investigating various reports of chemical attacks, including one on Duma in East Ghouta on April 7, which activists claim killed dozens of people. "Such acts contradict the unequivocal prohibition against chemical weapons enshrined in the Chemical Weapons Convention".

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirmed on Wednesday that chlorine was likely used in a February attack in Saraqib, Syria.

In a statement released Wednesday, the global chemical weapons watchdog said it determined chlorine was "released from cylinders by mechanical impact" on neighborhoods in Saraqib during the February 4 attack.

State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert reported about the attack with the use of chlorine gas near the city of Saraqib on February 6.

More news: Carrick earmarked to be Mourinho's assistant at Manchester United

Investigators had "determined that chlorine was released from cylinders" in the Ali Talil neighborhood of Saraqeb in the northern province of Idlib. Only Syrian government forces are known to have helicopters.

Uzumcu strongly condemned "the continued use of toxic chemicals as weapons by anyone, for any reason, and in any circumstances".

The OPCW, however, did not say which side to the Syria conflict had used the banned munitions in Saraqib.

"It does not include identifying who is responsible for alleged attacks".

More news: Police facial recognition systems are 98 per cent inaccurate, says research

The team exhumed bodies and gathered more than 100 environmental samples now being analysed in different OPCW-designated labs.

Last month, Russian Federation held a press conference close to the OPCW headquarters in The Hague, at which it produced witnesses that claimed no chemical weapons attack had occurred, and that any choking had been due to dust inhalation.

A joint OPCW-United Nations mechanism for Syria has previously concluded that the Syrian regime has used both sarin nerve agent and chlorine, killing and injuring hundreds of civilians.

The Douma chemical attack in April prompted missile strikes by the United States, France and Britain against chemical weapons facilities in Syria.

More news: Georgia Candidate To Drive 'Deportation Bus' in Protest of Sanctuary Cities

Before the panel's mandate ran out late previous year, it also found the Syrian military to blame for at least three chemical attacks in villages in 2014 and 2015. The French government is due to hold a ministerial-level conference in Paris on Friday to build an alliance of countries determined to reconstruct an accountability mechanism for chemical weapons use, if necessary outside the confines of the UN.

Like this: