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Russia Slams US over Claims on Syrian Regime Chemical Attack

Russia Slams US over Claims on Syrian Regime Chemical Attack

Saturday, 25 May, 2019 - 07:45
A UN chemical weapons expert holds samples from one of the sites of a chemical weapons attack in the Ain Tarma neighborhood of Damascus in August, 2013. REUTERS/Mohamed Abdullah
Moscow - Washington - London - Raed Jabr and Asharq Al-Awsat
Moscow has blasted Washington over its claims that Syrian regime forces have carried out a fresh chemical attack. 

The Russian Defense Ministry said that Washington’s attempts to “impose another lie on this world” about the situation in Syria were “not even surprising anymore.

The ministry denied that any such attack in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib has taken place.

The US State Department said earlier this week that it was assessing indications that the Syrian regime used chemical weapons on Sunday during its offensive in Idlib.

"We are still gathering information on this incident, but we repeat our warning that if the Assad regime uses chemical weapons, the United States and our allies will respond quickly and appropriately," State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement.

She also denounced Russia for what she called a "disinformation campaign" as it tries to blame other parties for chemical attacks.

"The Assad regime's culpability in horrific chemical weapons attacks is undeniable," Ortagus said.

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova blasted the US over its claims.

“We regret to say that these insinuations on the alleged use of chemical weapons by Damascus against their own people have become an integral part of NATO policy in Syria and in the Middle East,” the spokeswoman told a news briefing.

“Instead of making efforts to assist in the political settlement of the internal Syrian conflict involving all the warring parties, the West opts for the continuous destabilization of the region,” she said.

Zakharova warned Washington against any move to “immediately and appropriately respond” to the alleged chemical use.

“We know very well what this means – in violation of the UN Charter and generally recognised norms of international law, they have twice launched missile strikes at Syrian territory in the interests of the armed Syrian opposition as well as the international extremist and terrorist groups operating in this sovereign state,” she told reporters.

“Recent discussions once again showed the West’s policy of double standards and the selective approach to the humanitarian aspects of the situation in Syria,” the spokeswoman said.

“In this connection, we would like to ask the Western representatives who are concerned so much about the humanitarian aspects of the situation in Idlib – why, for instance, don’t you demand special UNSC meetings on the situation in Syria’s northeast? In particular, on the aftermath of the anti-terrorist operations of the so-called international anti-ISIS coalition.”

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