Sunday, 27 May, 2018

Syria Might Be Making New Chemical Weapons

Courtesy MGN Courtesy MGN
Lillian Steele | 02 February, 2018, 21:43

Mr Trump ordered missile strikes against a Syrian air base last April in response to alleged chemical weapons attacks on rebel areas.

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has in the past determined that civilians in Syria may have been exposed to chemicals even after the Syrian government agreed to the 2013 deal, brokered by the USA and Russian Federation, to surrender its chemical weapons.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson condemned the January 22 strike the following day while speaking at the Paris launch of the International Partnership Against Impunity for Use of Chemical Weapons.

The Syrian regime has adapted its chemical weapons program since a 2013 disarmament deal and appears to be continuing to produce and employ banned chemical munitions, including the nerve agent sarin, the Trump administration said Thursday.

American officials have told multiple United States media outlets that Assad's regime has kept chemical weapons, officially banned by UN regulations, hidden inside the war-torn country despite an agreement to abolish those in 2013.

However it was "highly likely" that Syria had stockpiled some of its weapons after the 2013 intervention, the Trump administration officials said in a briefing reported by Reuters.

He accused Russia of violating its own commitments under a 2013 US-Russia agreement to rid Syria of its chemical weapons stockpiles and an worldwide treaty that bars their use. Nearly all independent analysts and investigators agree the Syrian regime is the culprit of the chemical attacks. "We will pursue accountability", she said, writing on Twitter.

Several children were also affected, the group said.

There were no indications that the Syria government, after seven years of civil war, had developed new, deadlier chemicals.

"This conference is tailor-made for Assad and his terrorist regime", said Mustafa Sejari, a senior official in the Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebel group that operates in northern Syria and added that "the Sochi statement does not concern us and is not even a subject of discussion".

The officials who spoke to reporters would only talk anonymously.

The official was referring to Russia's media offensive to deny its connection to chemical weapons use in Syria. The Islamic State (ISIS) group continues to use them, they said, although the jihadists' arms are said to be more rudimentary.

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