20:26 GMT +3 hours26 November 2014
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Saudi Diplomat Denies ‘Ukraine Arms in Syria’ Report

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The Saudi ambassador to Ukraine has dismissed a news report which claimed that Ukraine-made weapons had been shipped by his country to arm Syrian opposition forces, Saudi media said.

The Saudi ambassador to Ukraine has dismissed a news report which claimed that Ukraine-made weapons had been shipped by his country to arm Syrian opposition forces, Saudi media said.

The BBC said on Monday it had uncovered evidence that appears to suggest weapons intended for the Saudi military have been diverted to Syrian rebels. Three crates from a Ukrainian arms manufacturer - addressed to Saudi Arabia - were reportedly seen at a base being used by rebel fighters in the city of Aleppo.

In an interview with Saudi daily Okaz published on Thursday, Ambassador Judea bin Zaben Al-Hudhal described the media rumors as fanciful allegations purposefully fabricated by "certain forces" to suit their own ends.

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has not signed any arms supply deals nor any military cooperation agreements with Ukraine over the past three years,” the diplomat said.

The Ukrainian government earlier denied any arms shipments to Syria on behalf of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia saying that the country has a very effective arms export control system.

Earlier global media reports had implicated Saudi Arabia and Qatar in the delivery of multiple shipments of arms, including Kalashnikov assault rifles, BKC machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and anti-tank weaponry, to rebel fighters from the Free Syrian Army (FSA) via Turkey.