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Moscow to propose UN resolution to probe alleged Syria chemical attack

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaks during a press conference in Moscow on April 10, 2018
AFP Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV

Moscow (AFP) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Tuesday said Moscow will propose a UN resolution to investigate alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria, after Russia rejected a similar move from the US.

Lavrov said Russia would propose a “transparent and honest” investigation with the involvement of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons at the UN Security Council on Tuesday.

Russian-backed Syrian regime forces could ensure the safety of OPCW experts if they were to travel to the scene, he said. 

“If, under the pretext of a lack of security guarantees, those who employ anti-Russian arguments to pursue their Russophobic aims do not allow experts to come, then it will be a verdict on their true plans and show that they have no interest in establishing the truth.”

The United States put forward a draft resolution Monday following alleged toxic gas use in the rebel-held town of Douma that killed at least 40 people and prompted President Donald Trump to indicate that a decision could be taken imminently on US military action.

Moscow has insisted there is no evidence for a chemical attack and Lavrov previously said Russian experts had visited the scene.

US Ambassador Nikki Haley told Security Council diplomats that the United States wanted a vote on the measure, even though Russia said it contained “some unacceptable elements.”

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