THE HAGUE, April 25. /TASS/. Russian and Syrian officials plan bringing 17 eyewitnesses of the April 7 incident in the Syrian city of Douma to The Hague, where the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons [OPCW] has its headquarters, in order to prove that the alleged poison gas attack was a setup, Russia’s permanent representative to the OPCW said in a press release on Monday.
A spokesperson for the Russian mission said the Russian and Syrian representatives would hold a news briefing for members of the organization on April 26 where they would speak about the alleged Douma incident.
"Taking part in the news briefing will be the eyewitnesses of shooting of the footage that featured the fake pseudo-humanitarian action staged by the White Helmets and that provided grounds for the US/UK/French missile strikes at Syria on April 14," the press release said. "In all, there will be seventeen people, including physicians who were right at the scene on that day. They will recount the true story of the incident."
"The delegations [of the OPCW member-states - TASS] will get first-hand evidence on the forged footage that misled the world community," the Russian mission said.
"The briefing is organized in support of the OPCW fact-finding mission currently deployed in Syria to investigate the incident," the press release said.
The Russian envoy to the OPCW, Alexander Shulgin told a session of the OPCW Executive Committee on April 16 the Russian experts who had examined the site in Douma had not found a single trace of the attack. However, they managed to track down the people who had taken part in the shooting of the footage, which the White Helmets passed off later as confirmation of the alleged use of a chemical warfare agent.
The OPCW circulated a press release on Tuesday where it said the organization’s technical secretariat had advised the Russian delegation to let specialists of the fact-finding mission interview the eyewitnesses first and to put off the news briefing until the mission rounded up its work. Russian representatives said in response the briefing would be held as scheduled initially.