Syria envoy says United Nations security team visits alleged attack site

Syria envoy says United Nations security team visits alleged attack site

The sources accused Syrian regime forces, who have now taken full control of the town, of carrying out the attack in order to delay the global investigation into the suspected use of chemical weapons by the Russian-backed Syrian regime which killed at least 49 civilians last week.

He said: "The Government's failure to seek - let alone obtain - parliamentary approval for these air strikes sets a precedent for potential and more unsafe future action not just in Syria, but other countries".

Medical student Marwan Jaber said no chemical weapons were used on April 7.

More than 11 days have passed since a suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria left dozens of people dead, yet it is still unclear when independent investigators will gain access to the site to work out what happened.

The US, UK and France say that, based on open source information and their own intelligence, they are confident chlorine and possibly a nerve agent were used.

"And on Wednesday is when we plan the arrival of the OPCW experts", he added. It also reported a separate air strike on the Dumayr air base near Damascus.

OPCW Director-General Ahmet Üzümcü said the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) had made a decision to carry out reconnaissance at two sites in the town of Douma before the inspectors would visit them.

"It is highly likely that evidence and essential elements disappear from the site, which is completely controlled by the Russian and Syrian armies", the French foreign ministry said.

"Do we sit back, do we defend (human) rights by saying, 'Rights are for us, principles are for us, and realities are for others?' No, no!" the French leader said. Israel did not confirm or deny it.

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British Prime Minister Theresa May has rejected opposition calls for a law requiring Parliament's approval to commit United Kingdom forces to military action.

Until Saturday, Douma was the last rebel-held town near Damascus, and the target of a government offensive in February and March that killed hundreds and displaced tens of thousands.

"Not even a day passed after the missile strikes when their organizers started putting forward odd and political initiatives", Nebenzia said.

United States officials also raised concerns that Russian Federation visited the site and "may have tampered with it", an allegation which has been refuted. Syria and its main allies Iran and Russian Federation blamed Israel for that attack.

However, Russia has repeatedly denied all allegations.

The accounts contradict what the Syrian government and Russian Federation have reported: that there was no gas attack in Douma.

"It is our concern that they may have tampered with it with the intent of thwarting the efforts of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission to conduct an effective investigation", he said.

"While searching the site, the Russian nuclear, chemical and biological-warfare units have found substances that fall under the Convention for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons", Colonel Aleksandr Rodionov, an officer with the Russian nuclear, chemical and biological-warfare troops, told journalists.

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