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Lavrov: OPCW rejects Russia’s request to hold briefing on Syria’s Douma

Russia's top diplomat stressed that it won’t be possible to cover all tracks related to the events in Douma

MOSCOW, June 10. /TASS/. The Technical Secretariat of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has rejected Moscow’s request on holding a briefing with experts on the April 2018 events in Syria’s Douma, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Monday.

According to Lavrov, some people among the group of the OPCW’s Western experts wrote the truth about what has happened in Douma. "For example, no one dropped the canisters of chlorine from the air, they were brought to a house and put on the bed."

"The Technical Secretariat’s leadership is trying to sweep this evident fact under the carpet," Lavrov stressed. "They are rejecting our request on holding the briefing with the participation of all experts, who investigated this incident in eastern Douma in April 2018."

Meanwhile, Lavrov stressed that the West won’t be able to cover up all traces related to the events in Douma. "After realizing that this was a staged story, they decided not to wait until the experts’ visit and bomb the facilities on the Syrian territory," the minister said. "And now they want just to distance themselves from any discussion on the evidence that has emerged."

Incident in Douma

A number of non-governmental organizations, including the White Helmets, alleged that chemical weapons were used in Douma, Eastern Ghouta, on April 7, 2018.

According to a statement on the organization’s website, chlorine bombs had been dropped on the city, which caused dozens of fatalities. Many other civilians were rumored to have been taken to hospital. The Russian Defense Ministry dismissed this as fake news. Representatives of the Russian Center for Reconciliation of Opposing Sides in Syria visited the site several days after the incident, but did not find any signs of chemical weapons having being used.

On April 14, 2018, the US, the UK and France delivered massive missile strikes at targets in Syria without the UN Security Council’s permission. Missiles hit a research center in Damascus, the Republican Guard’s headquarters, an air defense base, several military airbases, and army depots. Washington, London and Paris claimed the strikes had come as a response to an alleged use of chemical weapons in Douma.