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Kremlin: US swept real chemical weapons probe in Syria under the rug, prefers labelling

Moscow categorically disagrees with the approach employed by the Americans, the Kremlin spokesman said

MOSCOW, January 24. /TASS/. Washington has covered up any real investigation into previous evidence on chemical weapons use in Syria and prefers labelling, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.

The Russian presidential spokesman declined to comment directly on a statement by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who blamed Moscow for chemical weapons use in Syria, leaving "this privilege to colleagues from the Foreign Ministry of Russia."

"So, by and large, we categorically disagree with the approach employed by the Americans who have actually swept the real probe into previous cases of chemical weapons use under the rug," Peskov noted.

"They are embarking on a course of sweeping real international probes of previous cases under the rug and, unfortunately, (they) prefer the path of labelling without any grounds," the Kremlin spokesman stressed.

The US Secretary of State on Tuesday blamed Moscow for chemical weapons use in Syria. As Tillerson said, for the US, the recent chemical attacks in East Ghouta raised "serious concerns that Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian regime may be continuing its use of chemical weapons against its own people."

As Tillerson claimed, "whoever conducted the attacks, Russia ultimately bears responsibility for the victims in East Ghouta and countless other Syrians targeted with chemical weapons."

The US top diplomat asserted that "Russia’s failure to resolve the chemical weapons issue in Syria calls into question its relevance to the resolution to the overall [Syrian] crisis."

Tillerson added that Russia must at least "stop using veto power to block United Nations Security Council actions" related to this issue.

The Associated Press earlier reported citing ‘activists and rescue teams" that the Syrian government had launched an attack on January 22 "with suspected poisonous gas that has affected nearly 20 civilians in a rebel-held suburb near the capital, Damascus."

According to AP’s report, the Syrian government denied the use of chemical weapons.