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Syria chemical attack: Inspectors allowed into Douma

Syria chemical attack: Inspectors allowed into Douma

The US, UK and France have blamed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime for the attack and together carried out airstrikes over the weekend in response, with the support of other Western nations.

Nebenzia went on to call Washington and its allies "self-appointed executioners" and accused them of pressuring Russian Federation to change its position after the latest round of airstrikes and a promised new round of sanctions.

The U.S. ambassador in Moscow, Jon Huntsman, said in a video, "Before we took action, the United States communicated with" Russia to "reduce the danger of any Russian or civilian casualties".

The Pentagon denied any American military activity in the area.

The barrier for the inspectors comes days after the US, UK and France bombarded sites they said were linked to Syria's chemical weapons programme.

Medical student Marwan Jaber said no chemical weapons were used on April 7.

OPCW Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü said the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) had made a decision to carry out reconnaissance at two sites in the town of Douma before the inspectors would visit them.

Witnesses and Western governments said helicopters dropped sarin and chlorine bombs that killed many children and women who were sheltering from the fighting between rebels and government troops.




In the meantime, the Russian military have found a laboratory operated by militants in central Douma, which the military says was used to produce chemical weapons.

But "strangers entered as we were in a state of chaos and spread a rumour among people there had been a chemical attack, and people became alarmed". Syria and its ally Russian Federation deny any such attack took place.

Inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) travelled to Syria last week to inspect the site, but have yet to gain access to Douma, which is now under government control after rebels withdrew.

"On Wednesday [April 18] is when we plan the arrival of the OPCW experts", Kirillov said. It said the missiles reportedly targeted regime air bases. It also reported a separate air strike on the Dumayr air base near Damascus.

He said any use of chemical weapons is in complete disregard of humanity, and is reprehensible and contrary to the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention as well as accepted global norms. Israel did not confirm or deny the allegations.

Those who still want to accuse the Syrian and Russian authorities of neglecting their duties, by "blocking" the experts from accessing the site of the alleged chemical attack, apparently are willing to risk the OPCW investigators' lives to promote their "dirty fake news", Zakharova said.

The accounts contradict what the Syrian government and Russian Federation have reported: that there was no gas attack in Douma.

The Kremlin also denied that Russian Federation was not allowing the OPCW mission in.

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