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Mar-27-2013 15:32printcomments

Syrian Rebels Accused of Using Chemical Weapons; UN Will Investigate

Syria asked the secretary-general to investigate an alleged chemical weapons attack on March 19.

Swedish professor Ake Sellstrom will lead the U.N. chemical weapons inspectors in Syria. (AFP)
Swedish professor Ake Sellstrom will lead the U.N. chemical weapons inspectors in Syria. (AFP)

(SACRAMENTO, CA) - Each time the United Nations and media around the globe report news from Syria, it is almost exclusively designed to back pro-Syrian rebels, and levy blame on the Assad government. Sadly, the rebels from the FSA (Free Syrian Army) have proven time and time again that they are essentially operating as terrorist jihadists against the legitimate Syrian government. They recently bombed the university in Damascus, as's Dr. Franklin Lamb reported from Damascus several days ago. Now the FSA is accused of a very serious offense, using chemical weapons. In relation to this, the UN has now approved the appointment of a Swedish scientist to probe allegations of chemical weapons being used in the conflict-ravaged country.

The U.N. investigation team will arrive in Syria next week and their investigation will include the areas of Homs, Otaiba, Khan al-Assal.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed the Swedish professor Tuesday, as a U.N. chemical weapons inspector. Professor Sellstrom previously worked in the same role in Iraq.

Al Arabia reports:

    Sellstrom was a chief inspector for UNSCOM, the U.N. inspection team that investigated and dismantled Iraq's biological and chemical weapons programs in the 1990s. Sellstrom also worked with UNMOVIC, the U.N. group that returned to Iraq in 2002 and found no solid evidence Baghdad had revived its banned arms programs before the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.

He is now working for a research institute that deals with chemical incidents. He will head the U.N. fact-finding mission that will investigate allegations of the reported use of chemical weapons in Syria.

U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky called Ake Sellstrom “an accomplished scientist with a solid background in disarmament and international security.”

However in an interview with The BBC World Report today, Sellstrom said that there will be no conclusions drawn from this fact finding mission. The BBC reporter found that odd, as I also did. Is a conclusion not a goal, really?

It turns out it is not, at least not when the suspect is a "friend" to the French, British and U.S. governments. That friend of course is the FSA, a group that works closely with the Israeli government according to a number of reports. The west began embracing the FSA as soon as they were done destabilizing the mostly secular government of Libya under Muammar Gaddafi, who threatened western economies by announcing he would stop using the U.S. dollar in oil trading.

Sellstrom openly admits that even though the FSA is accused, he will not be attempting to determine that, on his fact finding mission. Instead of criticizing the UN plans, he praised them.

Of course as this takes place, the FSA is raising charges against the Syrian government, again, as they have repeatedly, often falsely. This allows the UN to have a balancing act, even though the entity accused of this very serious act hails from the western and Israeli friendly FSA.

The investigation will be technical and not a criminal investigation, looking at whether chemical weapons were used and not at who may have used them.

The incident Syria asked the secretary-general to investigate happened in Khan al-Assal, Aleppo province. This is where, Damascus says, rebel forces used chemical weapons in an attack on 19th March 2013. Right on cue, staying on the side of the FSA, Britain and France asked for an investigation of two other alleged attacks reportedly carried out by government forces.

At this point, U.S. and European officials say there is no evidence of a chemical weapons attack, but the allegations of the rebels are worth taking seriously. However if it did turn out to be true, the event would be the first use of such weapons in the two-year-old Syrian conflict. The UN places the death toll in Syria at 70,000 lives; 12,000 more people than the U.S. lost in the Vietnam war, or in combat in WWI.

The United Nations confirmed that France and Britain wrote to Ban Thursday, calling his attention to rebel allegations of an attack near Damascus, as well as one in Homs in late December. The rebels blame Syria’s government for those incidents as well as the Aleppo attack, however the FSA has made many statements that we learned were false.

Ban made clear on Thursday that the investigation would initially focus on the Aleppo incident, in which the government and rebels accuse each other of firing a missile laden with chemicals, killing 26 people.

But he has left open the possibility that the investigation could be broadened. In a letter to the Security Council on Friday, Ban said he had asked Britain, France and Syria for further information on the other alleged chemical attacks “with a view to verifying any alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria.”

Sources: Al Arabiya with Agencies -


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