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Assad regime continues violating 2013 agreement

Flouting deal to destroy weapons, in last 10 days, regime has carried out 4 chlorine gas attacks in Hama, Damascus, and Idlib

Web editor: Yuksel Serdar Oguz   | 04.04.2017
Assad regime continues violating 2013 agreement

ANKARA 

Flouting a 2013 agreement under which Syria’s Assad regime is supposed to destroy its chemical weapons arsenal, since then the regime has carried out at least 162 chemical weapons attacks.

On Sept. 14, 2013, facing the prospect of U.S. military intervention, Damascus agreed to comply with UN Security Council Resolution 2118's timeline for the destruction of its chemical weapons arsenal. The timeline demanded that Syria eliminate all of its "priority one" chemicals by Dec. 3 and all “priority two” chemicals by Feb. 5 of the next year.

The move followed a deadly August 2013 regime attack on Syrian opposition-held areas in Ghouta, eastern Damascus, with chemical weapons and nerve agents.

More than 1,400 civilians were killed, most of them women and children, according to local and international human rights groups.

In the years since, the U.S. said that in fact only 4 percent of the priority one chemicals were destroyed, although a joint mission led by the UN and Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) had declared the stockpiles eliminated.

The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) issued a report on Feb. 20 saying that over the last three years the Assad regime has carried out 162 chemical attacks killing at least 230 civilians, mostly in Idlib, the Damascus suburbs, Hama, and Aleppo.

In the last 10 days alone, the regime has carried out four chlorine gas attacks in Hama, Damascus, and Idlib.

On March 25, regime helicopters targeted the town of Al-Latamna in northern Hama with barrel bombs containing chlorine gas, killing at least two and hurting dozens more.

On March 30, regime attacks targeted the neighborhood of Kabun in Damascus, badly hurting 35 civilians. 

On Tuesday, at least 100 people were killed when regime warplanes carried out a chlorine gas attack in the Idlib province.

The attack came one day after a regime aircraft carried out a similar chlorine gas attack on the town of Al-Habit in Idlib, hurting dozens. 

In August 2016, Bashar al-Jaafari, Assad’s representative at the UN, blamed the 2013 sarin gas attack on Damascus’ Ghouta suburb on French intelligence, a claim later refuted by OPCW.

2016

Sept. 6: Syrian regime helicopters drop a number of barrel bombs laced with chlorine gas on opposition-held parts of Aleppo’s Sukkari district. At least 100 people poisoned.

Nov. 24: At least 13 people injured as a result of regime barrel bombs containing toxic chlorine gas in the city of Aleppo.

Dec. 9: At least 46 civilians killed and 230 others injured in regime attacks in the northwestern city of Aleppo.

Dec. 12: At least 85 civilians hurt by regime mustard gas attack in the Daesh-controlled Hama province.

Dec. 26: Jan. 5, 2017: Regime forces fire rockets containing toxic chlorine gas in Damascus’ Wadi Barada Valley, hurting dozens.

*Reporting by Selen Temizer; Writing by Sibel Ugurlu

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