09/26/2013, 00.00
SYRIA-UN
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UN experts on chemical weapons arrive in Damascus

The group is led by Ake Sellstrom, who already investigated the use of chemical weapons in Ghouta. There have been at least 14 cases of use of these deadly weapons. Both sides of conflict, the army and rebels accused. UN Security Council works for a resolution on Damascus’ hand over of chemical weapons.

Damascus (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A group of experts of chemical weapons arrived in Damascus yesterday to open new investigations into the use of lethal weapons in the Syrian conflict. The group, led by Ake Sellstrom already conducted the investigation on chemical weapons used in Ghouta on 21 August, and concluded that the victims and survivors had traces of sarin gas.

Now experts must broaden the investigation to 14 other cases in which such weapons were reported to have been used. Sellstrom has already stated in the past that the UN has received many allegations on the use of lethal force against the two sides of the conflict, the Syrian army and armed opposition. He believes his team can make a full report by the end of October.

The United States, France, Britain, the Arab League have accused the Assad regime for the attack of 21 August. Syria and Russia instead accuse the rebels. Following the threat of military action by the U.S., Russia proposed the total surrender of Syria's chemical arsenal and that Assad at sign the UN Convention against the use of chemical weapons, which Damascus agreed to.

These days the UN Security Council is working on a resolution concerning the consignment of chemical weapons by Syria. The United States, France and Britain want to insert a clause threatening military attack. Russia (and China) are opposed to this clause, preferring the possibility of a new full resolution of threats if Syria does not comply with the schedule of deliveries.

 

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