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Russia to Expose US Chemical Weapons Provocations against Syria, Says Official

THE HAGUE- Russia will continue to expose provocations by a group of US-led countries against the Syrian government, which are expected to produce the impression Damascus uses chemical weapons, the chief Russian delegate, Deputy Industry and Trade Minister Georgy Kalamanov, told the 89th session of the OPCW Executive Council, according to Itar Tass.

 "The opponents of Syria’s legitimate authorities never stop claiming that the government forces are to blame for using chemical weapons against civilians. Allegedly there are [confirmations] of this in reports by the Joint Investigative Mechanism based on information gathered by the [fact-finding mission] in Syria," Kalamanov said.

"But who presents this pseudo-information? Non-governmental organizations, such as the White Helmets, on the payroll of the United States, Britain and other countries that advertise them," he said. "The White Helmets are fleeing Syria. They have utterly discredited themselves even in the eyes of their western sponsors."

"We will continue to expose the real background of this dirty provocative game, which is being continued by a group of US-led countries against the legitimate government of Syria with the help of distorted facts and fake videos filmed on orders by the White Helmets and their likes," Kalamanov said.

Russia Urges US to Eliminate Chemical Weapons Ahead of Deadline

 Kalamanov also said that Russia is urging the United States to eliminate its chemical weapons stockpiles ahead of the established deadline.

"We insistently call upon Washington to consider its capabilities regarding the elimination of declared chemical weapons and to follow in our footsteps to do that ahead of the declared deadline in strict accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention," he said.

Kalamanov recalled that the United States still possessed a large arsenal of chemical weapons.

"US officials have been regularly telling us about what they describe as successes in conducting systemization work," Kalamanov said. "In fact no chemical weapons elimination work has been conducted for the past several years."