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    A Syrian man collects samples from the site of a suspected toxic gas attack in Khan Sheikhun, in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, on April 5, 2017

    Methods Investigating Idlib Chemical Attack Should Be Revised – Syrian Diplomat

    © AFP 2019 / Omar haj kadour
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    A Syrian diplomat has commented on a report that blames Damascus for the Idlid chemical attack, which has already been debunked by Moscow.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The methods of UN-OPCW Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) should be revised and made more impartial before it can continue looking into the use of chemical weapons in Syria, Syrian Ambassador to China Imad Moustapha told Sputnik on Thursday.

    "The OPCW JIM mandate under the existing conditions should not be extended. A complete overhaul of their procedures should be undertaken," Moustapha, who also served as the Syrian ambassador to the United States, said.

    According to the ambassador, the investigative team should meet a number of requirements, including strict impartiality, apolitical conduct, reliance solely on scientific evidence and the refusal to use testimonies by groups that "benefit politically from these attacks."

    Moustapha added that the work of the investigative mission was currently overly politicized and their report contained many contradictions and weak points.

    "A further investigation of the chemical attack should be carried on, but under totally different conditions. It should be conducted with professionalism, integrity and objectivity," the diplomat said.

    UN-OPCW Report Blames Damascus for Idlib Chemical Attack, Moscow Strikes Back

    According to the newly released UN-OPCW report, the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad is allegedly responsible for the use of sarin in Idlib, while Daesh terrorist group is responsible for the use of sulfur mustard in Umm Hawsh.

    Moscow has slammed the document, stating that the report looked more like an amateur document, and was based mostly on assumptions and the selective use of facts.

    Following the report's release, the Russian Defense Ministry, Foreign Ministry and Ministry of Industry and Trade have presented their own report on chemical attacks in Syria, debunking all three main points in the document, which allegedly prove Damascus' involvement in the incident.

    READ MORE: Russia Debunks UN-OPCW Report Blaming Damascus for Idlib Chemical Attack

    Most recently, Syrian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari has rejected the allegations presented in the report and emphasized that the investigators had not visited Khan Sheikhoun and the Shairat airbase, which was allegedly used by Syrian troops to stage the chemical attack.

    The Khan Sheikhoun incident that took place in Syria's Idlib province on April 4, 2017, left 80 people dead and injured 200 more. While the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, supported by the United States, immediately blamed the Syrian government for using the chemical weapons against civilian population, Damascus has strongly denied the allegations and reiterated that it does not possess any chemical weapons' arsenal, the full destruction of which was confirmed by the OPCW.

    Related:

    Moscow Slams Claims That Sarin Used in Idlib Was of 'Syrian Origin'
    Russia Debunks UN-OPCW Report Blaming Damascus for Idlib Chemical Attack
    Turkish Troops Set Up 2nd Observation Post in Safe Zone in Idlib Province, Syria
    Tags:
    chemical attack, Khan Sheikhoun, Syria, Idlib
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