Chlorine likely used in February attack in Idlib, Syria

  • Chlorine likely used in February attack in Idlib, Syria

Chlorine likely used in February attack in Idlib, Syria

An worldwide chemical weapons watchdog said on Wednesday that a recent report confirmed "chlorine was likely used as a chemical weapon" in Syria's Douma region.

Damascus joined the Chemical Weapons Convention, which bans the use or production of toxic arms, in 2013 under a deal brokered by the United States and Russian Federation.

"Apparently, the incident on 4 February this year, as chemical weapons were used chlorine, which was sprayed in the air from the cylinders as a result of mechanical influence", - noted in the organization.

It has not yet issued a report on that attack. Only Syrian government forces are known to have helicopters. The scale of the attack prompted the UK, France and the United States to mount cruise missile strikes on what it said were Syrian government chemical weapons sites.

The samples tested positive for precursors needed to make the nerve agent sarin, he said.

The FFM is required to study available information relating to allegations of use of chemical weapons in Syria, including information provided by the Syrian Arab Republic and others.

"These chemicals were detected in previous sarin attacks, Khan Sheikhoun, East Ghouta and no doubt Douma", Bretton-Gordon said. Those findings are expected by the end of the month. "Among other things, these conclusions are based on the presence of two cylinders, in which, as stated, previously contained chlorine; eyewitness testimony; samples taken from the environment and indicating the presence of chlorine, which is unusual for the surrounding area; data on patients referred to medical institutions for help after the incident, which had the signs and symptoms of exposure to chlorine and other toxic chemicals", said Wednesday the press service of the OPCW. Rebels were found to have used sulfur mustard once on a small scale. The French government is due to hold a ministerial-level conference in Paris on Friday to build an alliance of countries determined to reconstruct an accountability mechanism for chemical weapons use, if necessary outside the confines of the UN.

A suspected chemical attack on April 7 in the Douma enclave near Damascus prompted missile strikes by the United States, France and Britain against alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria.