Published On: Sun, Jun 2nd, 2013

Syrian Military seizes Sarin Gas from ” rebels “

Christof Lehmann (nsnbc),- The Syrian Arab News Agency SANA reports that the Syrian Army has seized two containers with Sarin nerve gas. The seizure of the banned chemical followed the recent seizure of two cylinders with Sarin from 12 members of the Jabhat al-Nusrah front by Turkish law-enforcement officers. The evidence trail may lead to Saudi-Arabia and Malaysia. Russia and Syria continue demanding full and independent investigations.

According to reports from the Syrian Arab News Agency SANA, the containers with the banned Sarin gas were seized together with automatic rifles, pistols and improvised explosive devices in the Faraieh district of the city of Hama.

Seized Sarin gas containers. Photo SANA

Seized Sarin gas containers. Photo SANA

Sarin, which according to UN Resolution 687 is classified as a weapon of mass destruction, and which was internationally banned in 1993, is when it is deployed, an extremely toxic, odorless, colorless and extremely lethal nerve gas. Contact with even minute amounts of Sarin disrupts the nervous system and over-stimulates muscles and vital organs.

Both the administration of US President Obama and other representatives of the anti-Syrian alliance have repeatedly warned against the use of chemical weapons, called it a “game changer” and have repeatedly accused the Syrian government and military for using chemical weapons so as to justify a military aggression against Syria. Russia and Syria have repeatedly demanded full, independent investigations into every single case of chemical weapons use by expert commissions.

The US administration and members of the anti-Syrian alliance continue using chemical weapons threats to position the Syrian government and military as war criminals. A UN investigation as well as other, mounting evidence strongly suggests that it is the foreign backed opposition, first and foremost the strongest of the fighting forces with al-Qaeda association, such as Jabhat al-Nusrah, which are using chemical weapons including Sarin. Further more, the trace of evidence is leading to Turkey, Saudi-Arabia and eventually Malaysia.

The head of the UN commission investigating the use of chemical weapons near Aleppo, Carla Del Ponte stated in her report, that she, much to her surprise, could not find any evidence that supports, that the Syrian government or military used chemical weapons. Del Ponte further more stated, that the chemical weapons used in Aleppo were fired from an area that was being held by “rebel forces” at that time, and that evidence indicates that the chemical weapons may have arrived via, or even have been provided by Turkey.

Del Ponte´s suggestion was supported when Turkish law-enforcement officers arrested 12 members of the Jabhat al-Nusrah, in possession of metal cylinders with 2 kg of Sarin. The Turkish authorities have, however not been forthcoming with additional and detailed information.

Old Saudi smuggling routes reactivated. Map plottings by Major (r) Agha Humayun Amin

Old Saudi smuggling routes reactivated. Map plottings by Major (r) Agha Humayun Amin

While the latest cases involving Sarin all seem to lead to Turkey, also Saudi-Arabia is under suspicion of having provided chemical weapons capabilities to al-Qaeda associated fighters in Syria. Suspicion of Saudi-Arabian involvement was raised after several videos surfaced, featuring opposition fighters showing of small laboratories which they claimed to have received from Saudi-Arabia. Other videos featured “rebels” killing rabbits with chemical weapons, threatening that Alawites and all Syrians who did not join the opposition would suffer the same fate as the murdered animals.

Saudi-Arabia has reportedly re-activated old smuggling routes which were used to support the al-Qaeda insurgency during the US occupation of Iraq to support the Syrian opposition, and lately, increasingly also to destabilize Iraq. 

Yet another trace of circumstantial, but strong and verifiable evidence is leading to al-Qaeda operatives in Malaysia. In February 2013 Malaysian police in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur arrested and charged the former Malaysian army captain Yazzid Sufaat  and his female associate Halimah Hussein for recruiting Malaysian youth for mercenary service in Syria. Both were charged with aiding and abetting al-Qaeda associated terrorist organizations.

The former army captain Yazzid Sufaat has previously been tied to an al-Qaeda chemical weapons program. In 2001 Yazzid Sufaat was arrested after returning from Afghanistan. During his 2001 arrest, Sufaat was under suspicion of working on a biological and chemical weapons program for al-Qaeda.

Both Russia and Syria continue insisting, that each and every case involving chemical weapons must be thoroughly investigated. Meanwhile, the Doha-alliance including the US administration continue pressuring toward resolutions that condemn the Syrian military´s operations against the “opposition” while the fact that it is the western-backed opposition that was caught red-handed with chemical weapons is omitted from the discourse.

About the Author

- Dr. Christof Lehmann is the founder and editor of nsnbc. He is a psychologist and independent political consultant on conflict and conflict resolution and a wide range of other political issues. His work with traumatized victims of conflict has led him to also pursue the work as political consultant. He is a lifelong activist for peace and justice, human rights, Palestinians rights to self-determination in Palestine, and he is working on the establishment of international institutions for the prosecution of all war crimes, also those committed by privileged nations. On 28 August 2011 he started his blog nsnbc, appalled by misrepresentations of the aggression against Libya and Syria. In March 2013 he turned nsnbc into a daily, independent, international on-line newspaper. He can be contacted at nsnbc international at nsnbc.wordpress@gmail.com

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