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Russian official accuses US of shifting blame for Syrian aid convoy shelling

The UN has suspended sending humanitarian convoys to Syria after 20 civilians and a member of the Syrian Red Crescent were killed in a shelling attack on an aid convoy

MOSCOW, September 20. /TASS/. Washington is trying to shift the blame for an attack on a humanitarian convoy in Syria on Russia and its aerospace forces claiming that this was an airstrike rather than shelling, senior lawmaker in the upper house of parliament Franz Klintsevich said on Tuesday.

"It is clear what the US is talking about by claiming that the humanitarian convoy in Syria was hit by an airstrike, not artillery shelling. These are direct accusations against Russia and its Aerospace Forces," said Klintsevich, the First Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council Committee for Defense and Security.

The US side has provided no evidence, Klintsevich said adding that by insisting on this version Washington is trying to "sweep the coalition’s recent strike on Syria’s government forces under the rug."

"And here the convoy came into play. I’m not saying that the US bombed it. But it is evident that they used the convoy shamelessly as part of the information war," he said.

"If the US does indeed seek peaceful settlement in Syria, it needs to really cooperate with Russia rather than make unfounded accusations," he added.

Earlier reports said some 20 civilians and a member of the Syrian Red Crescent were killed in the attack on the convoy. The UN said it could not establish the circumstances of the incident now but "various sources" confirm it was fired upon from artillery weapons. The UN later announced that it suspended sending humanitarian convoys to Syria citing security reasons.

A representative of the US administration said that the humanitarian convoy had been hit by an airstrike stressing that the forces of the US-led international coalition were not behind this.