UPDATE: United Nations To Formally Indicate Syrian Government In 2016 Chlorine Gas Attacks

As reported by Middle East Eye, according to a private source, the most recent UN inquire into chlorine gas attacks in Syria will assign the blame to Bashar al-Assad and the Syrian Government. Prior to the news today, there have been 3 separate chlorine gas attacks in the last 6 weeks.

On August 2, 2016, a chlorine gas attack was launched against Saraqeb, a small Syrian town. According to eye witness accounts from doctors and aid workers serving in the region, “Barrels suspected to contain chlorine gas” were dropped on the town and in total, “about 30 people, mostly women and children” were injured by the attack.

At the time, the Russian government was actually the first party to step forward and ask the United Nations to formally investigate the matter as the believed Syrian rebels – supported by the US Government – were responsible for the attack.

It was not until days later, on August 11, 2016 the the UN decided to investigate the claims after another chlorine gas attack targeted the besieged town of Aleppo, Syria earlier that same day. According to reports, 70 people were killed by the attack and countless more were injured. This time, however, it was the Syrian rebels who stepped forward levying accusations of their own against the Syrian government for the incident.

Then, nearly a month later on September 6, 2016,  a second and much larger chlorine gas attack targeted Aleppo once more. According to the reports at the time, “Syrian government forces have been accused of dropping barrel bombs containing chlorine from helicopters on a suburb of Aleppo, injuring 80 people.

The finding released in the most recent UN inquire today, September 16, 2016, stems directly from chlorine attack featured in the video above. According to the original report from Middle East Eye,”an international inquiry will identify two Syrian air force helicopter squadrons and two other military units it holds responsible for chlorine gas attacks on civilians, a Western diplomat told Reuters on Friday.

The finding – set to be published next week by the United Nations and the OPCW, the global chemical weapons watchdog – is based on Western and regional intelligence, the diplomat said.

As for the other two attacks referenced above, the UN also concluded the government was behind these attacks, as well as all the other chemical attacks throughout 2014, in a separate investigation published last month.

In response to the report, Russian Defense called the findings “hasty” and warned the UN “to walk very carefully” with any investigations in the future. It is likely the Russian government wont feel any better about today’s announcement.

Once again, for those of you who may not understand why this is significant,  Putin personally negotiated the removal of all weapons from Syria in 2013. Therefore, any allegation of chemical attacks by the Syrian government is a direct indictment on the Russian government at the same time – it makes them appear less powerful/influential on the world stage.

This article (UPDATE: UN To Formally Indicate Syrian Government In 2016 Chlorine Gas Attacks) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article using a creative commons license with attribution to Brian Dunn and Alternative Medi4

Categories: Human Rights, Syria, United Nations

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