Syrian government denies chemical attack
The Syrian Air Force hit a warehouse in Idlib province where chemical weapons were being stockpiled for shipping to Iraq, according to Russia’s Defense Ministry.
Published: April 5, 2017, 9:14 am
The Syrian government has denied using chemical weapons on their own people.
“We deny completely the use of any chemical or toxic material in Khan Sheikhoun town today and the army has not used nor will use in any place or time, neither in past or in future,” the Syrian army said in a statement after the attack.
The Syrians are currently advancing in Syria, recovering lost areas from ISIS rule in rural Hama, making it unlikely that they would resort to using chemical weapons.
The Syrian Air Force said they did not know there were any chemical substances inside the facility.
The attack which led to chemicals being released, comes on the eve of a Syria conference in Brussels and a week before peace negotiations are to resume.
The untimely deadly incident suggests another false chemical attack allegation made against the government, similar to the Khan-al-Assal 2013 attack where terrorist militants had hoped that former President Obama’s “red-line” would be crossed leading to US-intervention in Syria against the government.
In February 2014 report from the UN, it stated that the chemical agents used in the Khan-Al-Assal attack bore the “same unique hallmarks” as those used in the 2013 Ghouta attacks.
In neither incident, however, was the commission’s “evidentiary threshold” met in regard to identifying the perpetrators of the chemical attacks.
Video footage in a White Helmets base, shows “rescuers” spraying water on people who are claimed to have been effected by Sarin, but in a real chemical incident involving Sarin or similar chemicals, these unprotected, unprofessional “rescuers” would be heavily effected if not dead.
Britain’s Guardian newspaper, urged EU leaders however not to reach any kind of deal with the legitimate government of Syria during peace talks held in Brussels.
EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini, commenting on the incident, was quick lay the blame on the Syrian government, saying that it bears responsibility for the “awful” attack.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson echoed Mogherini, accusing the Syrian government of perpetrating the attack calling it “brutal, unabashed barbarism.” He added that Iran and Russia, both Syrian allies, should also bear “moral responsibility” for it.
The strike on Tuesday, targeted a major militant ammunition depot east of the town of Khan Sheikhoun, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major-General Igor Konashenkov said in a statement.
The warehouse was used to both produce and store shells containing toxic gas, according to Konashenkov. He pointed out that both Iraq and international organisations have confirmed the use of chemical weapons by militants.
The same chemical munitions were used by militants in Aleppo, where Russian military experts took samples in late 2016, Konashenkov noted. Civilians have displayed identical symptoms to those of Aleppo chemical attack victims, RT reported.
At least 58 people, including 11 children, died and many more were injured after the hospital in Khan Sheikhoun was targeted in a suspected gas attack on Tuesday morning, Reuters reported.
Al-Masdar’s Yusha Yuseef was informed by the Syrian Army that the air force targeted a “missile factory” in Khan Sheikoun, using a Russian-manufactured Su-22 fighter jet to carry out the attack.
Most importantly, the Su-22’s bombs are unique in the sense that they cannot be filled with any chemical substances, which is different than bombs dropped from attack helicopters.
Hours after the chemical attack in Idlib, Sean Spicer, White House spokesman, affirmed that it is no longer US policy to remove President Bashar al-Assad from power.
Spicer said, “There is not a fundamental option of regime change as there has been in the past”. An official statement by the White House released later in the day echoed Spicer, with Trump putting the blame on former president Obama.
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