UN, October 27. /TASS/. Russia has started studying a report by the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) of the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the Russian mission to the UN said on Thursday.
AFP earlier reported that the document blames the April 4 incident in Khan Shaykhun on the Damascus government.
"We have started to scrutinize the document, which is of a complex technical nature. This work requires the participation of specialists on the matter from various agencies," embassy spokesman Fyodor Strzhizhovsky said.
He said the Russian side was perplexed by the fact that "an internal UN Security Council document is being directly quoted by Western news agencies."
Meanwhile, UN Deputy Spokesman for the Secretary-General Farhan Haq said in a statement that the Secretary-General has "full confidence in the professionalism, impartiality and objectivity of the Mechanism and thanks the Leadership Panel and staff of the Mechanism for their hard work and dedication."
Established in 2015, the JIM has already accused the Damascus government of using chemical weapons. In one of its previous reports, investigators blamed the Damascus government troops for three chemical attacks and the Islamic State terrorist group (outlawed in Russia) for one such incident. On October 24, Russia vetoed a US-backed draft resolution to extend the mission’s mandate until Novmeber 2018, saying that the report should be received and studied first.