A global chemical weapons watchdog OPCW says it has deployed fact-finding teams to investigate an alleged chemical attack in Douma, a town in Syria’s Eastern Ghouta kept in hands of insurgents.
“The Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirms that the Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) team is on its way to Syria and will start its work as of Saturday 14 April, 2018,” – the official confirmed.
The announcement came a few days after the alleged chemical attack which, according to NGOs on the ground, claimed the lives of more than 85 civilians and harmed thousand more.
Syrian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Bashar Al-Jaafari confirmed Damascus’ readiness to provide unlimited assistance to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) mission coming to the city of Douma in order to investigate into an alleged chemical attack.
“My country Syria stresses its unlimited cooperation with the OPCW to fulfill the commitments stated in the convention of the prohibition of the development, production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons,” Al-Jaafari said during an emergency meeting on Syria at the UN Security Council this week.
Once again Al-Jaafari reminded that Syrian government has no possession of any chemicals weapons including chlorine that was allegedly used over the weekend in Douma, he added.
“The Syrian Arabic Republic stresses once again it does not possess any chemical weapons of any type, including chlorine,”Al- Jaafari said, while addressing UN.
However the record of co-operation between OPCW and Syrian government is far from being flawless. Back in 2017 Syria rejected the conclusions of the report of the OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism on Khan Sheikhoun incident because it was not “neutral and not professional, and it built its false charges against Syria on the process of fabricating evidence and manipulating information” Al-Jaafari claimed.
In a session (November 2017) of the Security Council on the report OPCW-UN Joint Mechanism, Al-Jaafari wondered how the Mechanism didn’t consider Khan Sheikhoun incident as a political issue, saying “Since when is chemical terrorism considered a fully technical issue and not a political one?”
Al-Jaafari said that some states’ governments claim that they adhere to ethics and they consider themselves as custodians of the provisions of international law and the UN Charter while at the same time they adopt policies that violate these noble moral principles and they exploit them to implement their destructive interference agendas“.
“Some UN committees, such as the Joint Mechanism, which should be neutral, professional, and credible, have proven through their work that they are biased and politicized,” Al-Jaafari continued ‘(2017).
Ambassador cited a number of examples indicating to lack of neutrality and professionalism by the Joint Mechanism, and regretted that the report on the internal investigations on the incident of Khan Sheikhoun did not reveal the truth about the attack.
Syria-OPCW turbulent record casts doubts if the current mission findings would be accepted by Syrian government as objective. Subsequently it asises even more doubts if military action is an adequate solution: Saddam Hussein also claimed he had no chemical weapons of mass destruction, however four star US Gen.Colin Powell had an alternative point of view…
The question on alleged chemical weapons use in Syria leads the West to another dilemma: is Abu-Bakr al Baghdadi a viable alternative to Bashar Al-Assad?