Russia slams ‘amateurish’ UN report on Syria’s Khan Shaykhun incident

Press TV – Russia has criticized a recent United Nations report blaming the Syrian government for a chemical attack on the town of Khan Shaykhun, saying it is an “amateurish” document and based on selective data.

In a joint report sent to the UN Security Council on October 26, the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons’ Joint Investigative Mechanism held the Damascus government “responsible for the release of sarin” gas at Khan Shaykhun in Syria’s Idlib Province on 4 April 2017 that left more than 80 people dead.

The Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the UN said in a statement on Tuesday that the UN investigation into the incident was conducted with “major violations of high standards set by the Chemical Weapons Convention.”

“After reading the report carefully, it is hard to call it professionally prepared. Rather, it is amateurish and is based mostly on assumptions and selective use of facts,” the statement read.

It also noted that Russian experts will continue “studying technical aspects of the report” and release their assessments “soon.”

Syria’s Foreign Ministry has categorically denied the content of the joint report as “falsifications of the truth” that distorts the information on what happened at Khan Shaykhun.

Also reacting to the report was Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, who said the UN document contained “many inconsistencies, logical discrepancies, using doubtful witness accounts and unverified evidence.” He further stressed that certain countries were seeking to use the report to “resolve their own strategic geopolitical issues in Syria.”

Following the Khan Shaykhun incident, the Western countries rushed to blame it on Damascus, with the US launching a missile attack against Shayrat Airbase in Syria’s Homs Province on April 7.

Washington claimed that the air field targeted in the missile raid had been the origin of the April 4 gas attack.

Damascus denied the accusation of being behind the incident and described it as a fabrication” to justify the subsequent US missile strike.

Syria turned over its entire chemical stockpile under a deal negotiated by Russia and the United States back in 2013.