ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – Samples taken from an attack by Syrian government forces in March on an opposition-held town tested positive for a banned chemical substance, sources at the global chemical watchdog said on Wednesday.
On March 30, a Syrian regime air strike in the town of Latamneh, in the northern Syrian Hama area, injured around 70 people who suffered nausea, foaming at the mouth, and muscle spasms.
In a recent finding, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) determined the air raid contained the banned nerve agent sarin.
“Sample analysis results show clear presence of sarin,” a source told Reuters.
Syrian military officials have continued to deny that forces under President Bashar al-Assad have used chemical weapons during the country’s civil war.
However, in early September, United Nations war crimes investigators confirmed Syrian government forces had used chemical weapons over two dozen times during the long civil war.
Detectives also said Damascus was responsible for the deadly sarin chemical attack on Khan Shaykun in April which killed over 80 civilians.
The UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria said its findings were “the most conclusive” to date regarding the air raid on the town in Idlib Province.
“Government forces continued the pattern of using chemical weapons against civilians in opposition-held areas,” the UN report said.
“In the gravest incident, the Syrian air force used sarin in Khan Shaykun, Idlib, killing dozens, the majority of whom were women and children,” the report added, declaring the assault a war crime.
Investigators said they based their findings on photographs of bomb remnants, satellite imagery, and witness testimony.
A separate joint inquiry by the UN and the OPCW plans to report by the end of this month on who was responsible for the Idlib attack.
Editing by Ava Homa