22:56 GMT +314 November 2018
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    This photo provided by the Syrian Civil Defense White Helmets, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows members of the Syrian Civil Defense group helping a wounded man after airstrikes hit Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus, Syria, Thursday, March. 1, 2018

    White Helmets Hiring Locals for Staged Chemical Attacks, Paying in Food - MoD

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    According to intelligence information available to the Russian defense ministry, Daesh (ISIS)* has committed some 57 terrorist attacks and members of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces since September 1.

    Terrorists Planning Provocation Using Chemical Weapons in Aleppo, Elsewhere

    Militants in several Syrian regions including Aleppo are engaged in planning provocations involving the use of chemical weapons including chlorine, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said, citing information provided by the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria.

    "We have repeatedly informed the public about attempts by radical militants and the White Helmets, notorious for their fakes, to organize provocations using chemical agents and accusing government forces of using chemical weapons against the local population," Konashenkov noted, speaking at a press briefing on Wednesday.

    According to the spokesman, on October 27, the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria received information from locals that terrorists from the Islamic Party of Turkestan* had transferred twenty 10 liter containers of chlorine for use in false flag attacks in Maarrat al-Nu'man, a city in Idlib province, northwest Syria.

    These weapons were unloaded at Kafr Nabl and Al-Hawash, two nearby towns, according to eyewitnesses. Locals told the Center for Reconciliation that White Helmets had conducted a search for "residents ready to participate in staged video shoots in exchange for food," the spokesman said.

    Plans for similar provocations have been reported in other regions, Konashenkov said. "Only yesterday [October 30], residents in Aleppo province received information about preparations for such a provocation by the militants. To carry it out, members of the White Helmets arrived in the villages of Azaz, Marea and Al-Rai with professional video equipment and containers with poisonous substances, presumably chlorine."

    The Russian military continues to closely monitor the situation around possible provocations involving the use of chamical substances, the spokesman said. "To this end, Russian posts in the immediate vicinity of the demilitarized zone in Idlib province have been equipped with six special radiation, chemical and biological reconnaissance vehicles."

    Attacks in US-Occupied Areas of Syria Causing Losses Among Foreign Troops

    Terror attacks in the US-controlled areas of Syria have led to losses among foreign military personnel, as well as local Kurdish forces, Konashenkov said.

    According to the Russian military spokesman, since September 1, Daesh terror attacks and attacks on Kurdish forces have left over 300 Kurdish militia personnel dead or injured.

    "According to information obtained from the local population of territories beyond the Euphrates River, these terrorist attacks have also led to casualties among foreign military personnel," Konashenkov said.

    The spokesman reiterated that a "catastrophic humanitarian situation" has developed in the Rukban refugee camp in southern Syria as a result of US actions. "As a result of the irresponsible actions of the United States, which illegally occupied a large portion of Syria, a catastrophic humanitarian situation has developed in the Rukban refugee camp. Moreover, US forces, no longer hiding, are openly conducting intensive training of armed units among the local population," Konashenkov said.

    The Rukban refugee camp, located along the Syrian-Jordanian border in Homs province, southern Syria, is situated next to a US base in the town of Al-Tanf. Damascus and Moscow have repeatedly slammed the US over the humanitarian situation in the area, and accused Washington of training ex-jihadist militants at the base. Considering the US presence in the Arab Republic to be illegal, Syrian officials have repeatedly demanded that the US end its presence and operations in the country.

    US-Led Coalition Continuing Airstrikes Using Illegal Munitions

    According to Konashenkov, the US and its allies are continuing an intensive campaign of airstrikes in Syria, "including using ammunition prohibited by international conventions."

    Earlier this week, a coalition spokesman categorically denied that the coalition had used white phosphorus following reports that the town of Hajin, Deir Ez-Zor province, had been hit using the substance for the second time this month, leading to civilian casualties.

    * Terrorist groups outlawed in Russia and many other countries.

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