US sen. after sanctioning Russia, Iran over alleged chemical attack in Syria

MNA – Senator Ben Cardin, a Democrat from the state of Maryland, has called on additional sanctions against Russia and Iran in connection with accusations of an alleged chemical attack on the town of Douma in Syria’s Eastern Ghouta.

Cardin, who serves on the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told CBS’s Face the Nation weekly news show on Sunday that he was pleased with US President Donald Trump’s accusation of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Moscow and Tehran in backing Syrian President Bashar Assad, in light of claims about the alleged use of chemical weapons in the Arab republic.

Cardin admitted, however, that it would be “challenging” for the US to determine who is responsible for the purported attack, as the Syrian government “has closed the area. So we were not going to have the direct information.”

Earlier, several media outlets reported citing Syrian militants that the country’s army had allegedly used chlorine gas in the city of Douma. In turn, Syria’s SANA news agency quoted Syrian officials that the allegations were a simple provocation by the Jaysh al-Islam militant group and other mercenary fighters as a means to hinder the advance of the army of the Syrian government.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry announced according to local media that reports of a gas attack in Syria were not based on fact and were an “excuse” by the Washington and Western countries to take military action against Damascus.