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Syria ‘totally rejects’ watchdog report of 2018 chemical attack

January 29, 2023

DAMASCUS: Syria on Saturday rejected a report by the global chemical weapons watchdog that has blamed Damascus for a 2018 chlorine attack which killed 43 people, calling it “false”.

“Syria totally rejects the report” published Friday by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the foreign ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency SANA.

“The report lacks scientific proof,” it said, decrying “false conclusions”.

In the OPCW report, investigators said there were “reasonable grounds to believe” that at least one Syrian air force helicopter had dropped two cylinders of the toxic gas on the rebel-held town of Douma.

Damascus and its ally Moscow say the April 7, 2018 attack was staged by rescue workers at the behest of the United States, which afterwards launched air strikes on Syria along with Britain and France.

The OPCW dismissed claims that rebels and emergency workers had staged the attack.

Its team “thoroughly pursued lines of inquiry and scenarios suggested by Syrian authorities and other state parties, but was unable to obtain any concrete information supporting them.”