Syria chemical attack: Investigators allowed to visit site

OPCW says will not disclose details of investigative mission to Syria for security reasons

OPCW says will not disclose details of investigative mission to Syria for security reasons

Members of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons are in Damascus, days after US -led airstrikes on Syria.

Syria denied using chemical weapons.

Syria and Russian Federation deny unleashing poison gas during their offensive on Douma this month, which ended with the recapture of the town that had been the last rebel stronghold near the capital Damascus.

"That possibility always has to be taken into account, and investigators will look for evidence that shows whether the incident site has been tampered with", said Ralf Trapp, a consultant and member of a previous OPCW mission to Syria.

The OPCW monitored the process and declared the Syrian government no longer possessed chemical weapons in 2014, before contradicting that assertion when it confirmed sarin gas was used in the northern Syrian city of Khan Sheikhoun last April.

The then U.S. president Barack Obama threatened to retaliate with military action against the Syrian government before Russian Federation stepped in to broker a deal under which Mr Al Assad promised to destroy his chemical weapon stockpiles.

Early on Saturday, Washington and its allies unleashed more than 100 missiles on civilian and military facilities in Syria in response to an alleged gas attack in Douma that has been widely blamed on Bashar Assad's government.

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The attack on 7 April prompted military strikes on Syrian government targets by the US, UK, and France a week later.

Trump's letter to congressional leaders cites the rationale he gave publicly Friday night when he announced that the US and allies Britain and France were firing missiles into Syria in response to an alleged poison gas attack on Syrian rebels near Damascus the previous week.

The Assad government denies that it used chemical weapons.

"It's becoming absolutely clear that those in the West, who are hiding behind the humanitarian rhetoric and trying to justify their military presence in Syria with the need of defeating the jihadists, are on the same side as them [the terrorists], working towards dismembering the country", the Foreign Ministry said. "I can guarantee that Russian Federation has not tampered with the site", he told the BBC.

They'll investigate the suspected chemical attack, cited as justification for those strikes. "But it was the world saying that we've had enough of the use of chemical weapons".

The Western leaders also faced scrutiny at home over their actions.

In France, the conservatives, the far-left and the far-right have all criticised the strikes. The French Constitution bars presidents from going to parliament and President Emmanuel Macron will therefore not be questioned by law makers.

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