The Assad regime’s chemical weapons stockpile has been linked for the first time by laboratory tests to the largest sarin nerve agent attack in Syria, diplomats and scientists told Reuters.
A report by a joint investigation of the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons previously found the Assad regime responsible for over 20 chemical weapons attacks in Syria, prompting Russia to use its veto power three times to prevent the extension of the investigation.
France and around 30 other countries launched an initiative to prosecute and hold accountable those responsible for using chemical weapons in Syria during a conference held in Paris earlier this month.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson accused Moscow of backing Bashar al-Assad’s regime, stressing that Russia bears fundamental responsibility for chemical attacks in Syria.
Laboratories working for the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons compared samples taken by a UN mission in the Damascus suburb of Ghouta after the Aug. 21, 2013 attack, when hundreds of civilians died of sarin gas poisoning, to chemicals handed over by the Assad regime for destruction in 2014.
The Syrian Coalition has repeatedly called upon the international community to take action to stop the use of chemical weapons in Syria and hold those responsible to account.
The Coalition stressed that the regime and its backers “will not change their criminal behavior or stop violating international resolutions as well as the use of chemical weapons and the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity unless they pay a real price for their atrocious crimes.” (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)