Syria: Russia denies tampering with suspected chemical attack site


16 April, 2018 21:20 PM

Syria: Russia denies tampering with suspected chemical attack site

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Russia has denied interfering with evidence at the site of the suspected Syrian chemical attack which led to Western air strikes on Saturday.
In an interview for BBC's Hardtalk, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said: "I can guarantee that Russia has not tampered with the site."
Concern about tampering was raised by the US envoy to the international chemical weapons watchdog.
International inspectors are trying to reach the site in Douma, near Damascus.
The UK's envoy to the watchdog, the OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons), has called for the inspectors to be given "unfettered access" to Douma, a town that was a rebel stronghold at the time of the attack on 7 April and is now under the control of the Syrian government and Russian military.
Speaking as the OPCW gathered in The Hague to discuss the crisis, Peter Wilson dismissed as "ludicrous" Russian suggestions that Britain had helped stage a fake attack.
In other developments:
 The US is expected to announce fresh economic sanctions against Russia
 EU foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg said they understood the air strikes had had "the sole objective" of preventing further use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government
 UK PM Theresa May is to make a statement to Parliament after the opposition said it was wrong to have launched military action without consulting MPs
 The French parliament is to discuss the air strikes