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Fri Feb 7, 2020, 06:39 PM

Inquiry strikes blow to Russian denials of Syria chemical attack

Source: The Guardian

Inquiry strikes blow to Russian denials of Syria chemical attack

UN watchdog’s investigation rebuts claims it manipulated evidence of Douma incident

Patrick Wintour and Bethan McKernan
Fri 7 Feb 2020 13.07 GMT
Last modified on Fri 7 Feb 2020 18.20 GMT

A Russia-led campaign that claimed the UN weapons watchdog had manipulated evidence of a Syrian government chemical weapons attack has been dealt a blow by an official inquiry showing that two former employees hailed as whistleblowers had little direct access to the evidence and inflated their role.

The independent inquiry commissioned by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) shows that one of the two had never been on the team investigating the April 2018 attack in Douma and the other was only on the team for a brief period.

Both individuals, referred to in the report as Inspector A and B, may face legal action.

More than 40 people were killed on 7 April 2018 in the town of Douma on the outskirts of Damascus. The town was at the time held by rebels but besieged by pro-government forces. Civilians claimed they were the victims of a chemical weapon attack.

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Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/07/inquiry-strikes-blow-to-russian-denials-of-syria-chemical-attack

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