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GENEVA, March 14. /TASS/. The Russian delegation has slammed conclusions of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic as to events in Aleppo in June-December 2016.
At a session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, it said the aim of the report was to distort the facts. In its previous speeches at the Human Rights Council, Russian representatives "continuously marked an agenda-driven nature of Commission’s activity, an unbalanced nature of its reports," the Russian delegation said.
As for the present report, "its aim is clear - presenting the operation to liberate Eastern Aleppo from Jabhat al-Nusra (outlawed in Russia) gunmen and associated with it groups not as an anti-terrorist campaign, but as some bloodbath staged by the Syrian armed forces with the support of the Russian Aerospace Forces," it said.
The Russian diplomats drew attention to the date when the report on Aleppo was issued. It was made public on March 1, when a next round of intra-Syrian talks was underway in Geneva. Efforts were needed to create a positive atmosphere for a dialog, but the authors of the report "chose a different path".
As an example of "an absolutely biased approach," the Russian delegation mentioned the fact that the report spoke of only 200 terrorists in Eastern Aleppo, but in fact, according to UN data, there were at least 900 Jabhat al-Nusra gunmen there.
The Russian delegation also saw as outrageous conclusions of the authors blaming the Syrian government for the attack on a humanitarian convoy of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent on September 19, 2016.
The commission, that had no access to Syria, had not requested recording equipment data either from Russia or from other states capable to control the airspace over Syria (Syria, Lebanon, Iran, Israel, Jordan and the US). The report "ignored the results of investigation carried out by the Russian military". They were handed over to the Commission, the data gathered at the site pointed to Jabhat al-Nusra’s involvement in the attack on the convoy.
"All this makes one think that it was not just another unbalanced opus, but a political put-up job aimed at discrediting the Syrian government during the restarted process of negotiations and collection of false evidence for an allegedly independent and unbiased mechanism financed by a handful of countries," the Russian delegation stated, saying it "will have to review its relations with the Commission".