United Nations war crimes investigators have opened a probe of the chemical attack regime forces carried out on the town of Khan Sheikhoun in rural Idlib on Tuesday.
The UN Commission of Inquiry for Syria said on April 4 that it had opened the probe in a statement condemning the attack.
The Commission added that it is currently investigating the circumstances surrounding this attack including the alleged use of chemical weapons and reports of a subsequent attack on a medical facility where a number of injured persons were receiving treatment.
The statement also condemned the targeting of the medical facility where victims of the attack were being treated, saying both actions “would amount to war crimes and serious violations of human rights law.”
The Assad regime’s air force on Tuesday bombed the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun using rockets loaded with chemical substances, killing around 100 civilians and injuring some 400 more. Nearly half of the victims were women and children.
Immediately after the attack, President of the Syrian Coalition Anas Abdah telephoned the chair of the Commission Paulo Pinheiro to discuss details of the massacre and the possibility of the Commission to conduct an urgent investigation into the crime.
UN envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura told journalists in Brussels that all indications were that “it was a chemical attack and it came from the air.” He pointed out that the UN Security Council will convene an emergency session on Wednesday to discuss the incident and demand accountability.
The International Independent Commission of Inquiry on Syria has previously issued a report confirming the involvement of the Assad regime in a number of chemical attacks against civilians in Syria. Russia and China have blocked a draft resolution at the Security Council calling for the imposition of sanctions on the Assad regime following the results of the report. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)