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France pressing for Syria Chemical weapons attack resolution

An international chemical weapons watchdog is investigating the Khan Sheikhoun attack [Anadolu]

Date of publication: 11 April, 2017

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France's UN Ambassador insists UN must throw its weight behind efforts to clearly identify the perpetrators of the April 4 chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun.

France said on Tuesday that it will be pushing for a UN Security Council resolution condemning last week's chemical attack on civilians in northern Syria.

French UN Ambassador Francois Delattre told reporters at UN headquarters on Tuesday it's important that the council throw its weight behind calls for an investigation into the atrocity.

Delattre said it was too early to say whether France, Britain and the United States will move ahead with the text of the resolution they put forward last week or change it.

He said the latest developments — the chemical attack and the US strike on a Syrian air force base in retaliation — "are a potential game changer for the better" and the goal must be negotiations on a political transition in Syria.

Ongoing Investigations

Efforts are currently underway by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to ascertain who was behind the April 4 attack on Khan Sheikhoun.

The OPCW has scheduled a meeting of its executive council to discuss the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria.

According to a written notification posted Tuesday on the OPCW's website, the behind-closed-doors meeting will be held Thursday at its headquarters in The Hague.

Britain's delegation says in a tweet that it will be expressing its "horror" at the use of chemical weapons in the attack in Idlib province that left dozens dead.

Turkey's health minister said Tuesday that tests conducted on victims of the chemical attack in northern Syria confirm that sarin gas was used.

The OPCW said last week that its fact-finding mission is "gathering and analysing information from all available sources" about the attack.

'Open' to investigations

Russia's General Staff says the Syrian government is willing to let international experts to examine its military base for signs of chemical weapons.

The US on Friday carry out an airstrike on the Shayrat air base which is believed to have been used for last week's chemical weapons attack in the Idlib province.

Col. Gen. Sergei Rudskoy of the Russian General Staff said in televised remarks on Tuesday that the Syrian government is ready to let international experts to examine the base and that Russia will provide security for them.

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