Iraqi President Fuad Masum has called for a joint investigation of the United Nations and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) into reports of chemical weapon use in Iraq by Daesh, banned in Russia.
CAIRO (Sputnik) – On March 3, media reports emerged that chemical weapons had been used during a fight between Daesh militants and Iraqi troops in eastern Mosul. The current operation to recapture Mosul, the key stronghold of Daesh in Iraq, began in October 2016 and resulted in the liberation of Mosul’s eastern part this January, but fighting continues in the city's western areas.
Masum said on Wednesday that a joint UN-OPCW investigation into the possible use of chemical weapons by Daesh in Iraq was necessary, particularly in what concerns the most recent violence in the region.
Last week, the Russian Defense Ministry pointed to a lack of a proper OPCW response to the recent reports of chemical weapon use by Daesh in Iraq. Russian Defense Ministry's spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said that OPCW did not attempt to send its experts to investigate the chemical weapon attacks and did not issue any official statements condemning the chemical weapon use.
Following reports of chemical weapon use by Daesh in Mosul at the start of this month, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) said 12 patients were referred to hospitals showing symptoms consistent with exposure to a toxic chemical agent.
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