On April 4, a chemical weapons incident in Syria's Idlib province claimed the lives of some 80 people and inflicted harm on an additional 200 civilians. Damascus put the blame on militants and reiterated that it did not possess any chemical weapons. Moscow said a Syrian warplane in Khan Shaykhun hit a terrorist warehouse that stored chemical weapons slated for delivery to Iraq. A number of Western states blamed Damascus for the incident. The United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) started an investigation. The incident was used by Washington to launch a Tomahawk cruise missile strike against Syria's Ash Sha'irat airbase on April 6.
Russia is not so much defending Syrian President Bashar Assad through its actions in Syria, but rather the Syrian statehood, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday.
All conditions for the organization of visits by the experts of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to the Shairat airbase in Syria to investigate the alleged use of chemical weapons have been created, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.
Syrian President Bashar called the Idlib chemical attack in Syria "a cover up for the American intervention" in the country, which President Donald Trump intended to use to get support in his home country amid various conflicts with the members of the US establishment.
At the end of the day, the United States and EU countries will silently admit that April's chemical weapons incident in Syria was little more than a provocation, Russian expert Lev Klepatsky told Sputnik.
Delegation head at Astana talks and Special Presidential Representative for Syria said that Russia has irrefutable evidence indicating that the events in Khan Shaykhun were a provocation, and Moscow will continue convincing the West to change the position in this matter.
The president of Turkey said that the perpetrators of the Idlib chemical weapons incident must be punished.
Russian Defense Ministry has dismissed a report issued by western experts from the Human Rights Watch on the alleged use of a Soviet-era chemical bomb in Syria as a "fairy tale."
Paris has pinned the blame for the alleged chemical attack in the Idlib province on the Syrian government, but analysts say that the French investigation has not been unbiased. In an interview with Radio Sputnik, Professor Lev Klepatsky of the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs described the probe as "a manipulation."
On Thursday, the Russian Foreign Ministry questioned the findings of a French report into the alleged chemical attack in Syria's Idlib province. Radio Sputnik discussed the issue with Russian political scientist Alexei Gusev, who said that the report looks very much like a political "put-up job."
Moscow hopes the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons' (OPCW) will dispatch its "balanced" expert team to the site of a recent chemical incident in Syria as soon possible.
In an interview with Sputnik France, a number of French experts cast doubt on their country's probe into the alleged chemical attack in the Syrian province of Idlib earlier this month; the document alleges that the attack bore the "signature" of Damascus.
Chemical attacks carried by terrorists in Iraq and Syria were used to discredit Damascus and cast a shadow over Russia, according to the Collective Security Treaty Organization.
Syria's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates condemned the French claims of Sarin use in the April 4 chemical incident in Khan Shaykhun on Thursday as a "deception and fabricated lies."
There are no obstacles for experts to visit the sites of the reported chemical incident in Syria and the airbase hit by US missiles, the Russian foreign minister said.
Washington has not shared any data proving Damascus' involvement in the Idlib chemical incident with Moscow, the Russian foreign minister said.
The Kremlin spokesman expressed "extreme lack of understanding and regret" that the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has abstained from investigating the chemical incident in Idlib despite Moscow and Tehran suggesting doing that.
The Russian foreign minister called for a professional and transparent investigation of the Idlib chemical incident.
On April 24, the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned 271 employees of Syria's Scientific Studies and Research Center, which is suspected by the US authorities of being responsible for producing chemical weapons.
Moscow sees no reasons for Washington to impose restrictive measures on Damascus because no facts confirming the Syrian government's alleged role in the Idlib chemical incident have been established.
The government of the United States is trying to distract the international community from the necessity of thorough investigation of an alleged chemical attack in the Syrian province of Idlib by sanctioning the Syrian scientists, according to Konstantin Kosachev, the chair of the Russian upper house of parliament Foreign Affairs Committee.
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