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    A marine officer of the Cape Ray, a ship equipped to neutralize Syrian chemicals, shows a chemical protection suit to reporters

    France Stands by OPCW Amid US Claims of Chemical Attacks in Syria - Ministry

    © AP Photo / Alfonso Perez
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - France has taken into account the US allegations about the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons but has reaffirmed its absolute trust in the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Spokesperson for the French Foreign Ministry said.

    "We have noted with concern these allegations which must be investigated. We have every confidence in the OPCW", the French representative said during a briefing.

    The spokesperson also noted that French President Emmanuel Macron had earlier reaffirmed that his country would vigilantly monitor the use of chemical weapons. France supports imposing sanctions against the perpetrators of chemical attacks, the spokesperson said, stressing that France launched the International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons on 23 January 2018, in this regard.

    The statement comes after US Department of State Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said the United States was collecting information regarding a chemical weapons attack in Syria that had allegedly been carried out by the Middle Eastern country's government over the weekend.

    Meanwhile, US Special Envoy for Syria James Jeffrey stated that Washington has "no evidence" of the alleged use of chemical weapons in the Idlib province so far.

    READ MORE: US Cannot Confirm Reports of Use of Chemical Weapons in Idlib — Envoy for Syria

    The statement followed a day after the US State Department claimed it had seen signs that the Syrian army may be using chemical weapons in the country. The State Department also reiterated Washington's past threats that it would "respond quickly and appropriately" if allegations turn out to be correct, with the UK repeating this sentiment.

    Russia, however, insists on investigating all alleged cases of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, stressing that this investigation should aim to find the truth rather then bring new accusations against Damascus.

    Earlier in May, the Russian Defence Ministry stated that militants of the Nusra Front* terrorist group were preparing to stage a provocation in Syria's Idlib province in order to thereafter accuse the Russian Aerospace Forces and the Syrian army of allegedly attacking civilians with chemical weapons.

    *Al-Nusra Front or Jabhat al-Nusra, known as Jabhat Fatah al-Sham is a terrorist group banned in Russia

    Related:

    Alleged Chemical Weapons Use in Syria Needs to be Investigated - Moscow
    US Cannot Confirm Reports of Use of Chemical Weapons in Idlib - Envoy for Syria
    UK Vows to Respond if Alleged New Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Confirmed
    There Are Signs Syrian Gov't to Use Chemical Weapons - US State Department
    Tags:
    chemical attack, allegations, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Al-Nusra Front, U.S. Department of State, Emmanuel Macron, Syria, United States, Russia, France
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