Syria chemical attack: Investigators allowed to visit site | 2018-04-17 |

Syria chemical attack: Investigators allowed to visit site

BBC     17th April, 2018 08:29:19 printer

Syria chemical attack: Investigators allowed to visit site


Chemical weapons inspectors in Syria will be permitted to visit the site of an alleged chemical attack on Wednesday, Russia has said.


The international team has been in the country since Saturday, but has not been allowed to visit Douma.


The attack on 7 April prompted military strikes on Syrian government targets by the US, UK, and France a week later.


Syria and its ally Russia deny any chemical attack took place, with Russia calling it a "staged thing".


The missiles targeted Shayrat air base, the media outlets reported, without saying who was responsible.


Early on Saturday morning, Syrian time, the US, UK, and France launched a coordinated missile strike on multiple targets in the country.


The operation was in response to a chemical weapons attack that the three nations say was carried out by the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, in which dozens of civilians were killed as they took refuge in basements.


Investigators from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) are in the capital, Damascus, but have been waiting to be allowed to inspect the site of the alleged attack.


When they arrive at the site on Wednesday, it will be 11 days since the attack. They are expected to gather soil and other samples to help identify the substances - if any - used in an attack.


Syrian medical sources say bodies were found foaming at the mouth, and with discoloured skin and cornea burns.


US sources said they had obtained blood and urine samples from victims which had tested positive for chlorine and a nerve agent.


How did the air strikes happen?


Late on Friday night in Washington, President Donald Trump addressed the nation, revealing that he had authorised strikes in Syria with the UK and France.


As his speech came to a close, the first reports of explosions in Damascus began to emerge.