Khan al-Assal Massacre to Cover-up Chemical Weapons Use by Jabhat al-Nusrah
Christof Lehmann (nsnbc),- Both Russia and Syria have condemned the massacre in Khan al-Assal, committed by the Jabhat al-Nusrah affiliated “Liwaa Ansar al-Khilafa” brigade. Russia is calling for an immediate political settlement of the conflict in Syria. Syria´s Ambassador to Moscow stressed, that the al-Qaeda linked terrorists committed the massacre on 27 July to cover-up the use of chemical weapons in the area.
Russian Foreign Ministry called Khan al-Assal Massacre Genocide. The Russian Foreign Ministry sharply condemned the massacre committed by terrorist groups in the Khan al-Assal district of Aleppo, in which more than 123 Syrians, predominantly unarmed, non-combatant civilians were murdered.
Russia´s Foreign Ministry stressed, that the two terrorist groups had committed the crime of genocide, saying:
“The fighters of the two extremist groups have committed the crime of genocide by killing the captive Syrian officers as well as the pro-government civilians”.
Russia´s Foreign Ministry has called on the international powers who are involved in the crisis to do their utmost to immediately realize a political settlement and to put an end to the bloody crimes which are being committed by international terrorism.
Russia´s Foreign Ministry has also stressed the need for conducting a full investigation into the use of chemical weapons in the Khan al-Assal district of Aleppo and encouraged further cooperation between the Syrian government and the UN, saying:
“Moscow welcomes the constructive nature of the contacts underway in Damascus and efforts to reach an agreement without delay”.
Such agreements, the Ministry stated, would open the door for an accurate and objective investigation into the incident of chemical weapons use in Khan al-Assal. The Foreign Ministry also encouraged the UN expert team to take into account the results of the investigations which Russian experts have conducted regarding the Khan al-Assal incident, which have been forwarded to the office of the UN Secretary General as well as to the White House on 9 July 2013.
The United Nations High Representative for Disarmament Affairs and the Head of the Investigation Committee affiliated to the UN visited Damascus on 24 – 25 July, on invitation of the Syrian government. The Syrian Foreign and Expatriates Ministry has previously described the talks as “fruitful and comprehensive”.
The UN team accepted the invitation from Damascus after substantial political pressure from the side of Russia, after Russia informed the UN in no uncertain terms that the Russian expert investigators had followed all international standards in their investigation into the Khan al-Assal chemical weapons incident and that the evidence clearly pointed into the direction of the foreign-backed insurgents.
Syrian Ambassador Dr. Riyad Haddad: “Khan al-Assal Massacre Committed to Cover-up Chemical Weapons Use by Al-Qaeda. The Syrian Ambassador to Moscow, Dr. Riad Haddad stressed, that the armed terrorist groups who committed the recent massacre in Khan al-Assal were linked to al-Qaeda, and that the Khan al-Assal massacre had been committed with the intention to erase the traces of the chemical weapons which had been used in the area. Dr. Riad Haddad spoke to the Russian news agency Ria Novosti, saying:
“The main goal with the carnage which was committed by Jabhat al-Nusrah and the Ansar al-Khalifa brigade was to kill the witnesses on the use of chemical weapons which had been used by the armed terrorist groups”.
The chemical weapons attack in Khan al-Assal, with an improvised chemical laden rocket, killed 25 and injured another 110. During the subsequent massacre, another 123 were murdered and many still remain missing. Mass graves were discovered, which showed that the terrorists had attempted to hide their tracks by mutilating many of the bodies before attempting to incinerate them.
So far, western mainstream media have failed to report objectively about the chemical weapons incident and the subsequent massacre. The US Administration of President Barak Obama, the British Administration of Prime Minister David Cameron, the French Administration of President Francois Hollande, the Israeli Administration of Benjamin Netanjahu, and the regimes of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, who continue their material support of the terrorists with funds, arms, special forces, intelligence and other aid which amounts state-sponsorship of terrorism and the use of mercenaries, have failed to distance themselves from the terrorist organizations and to condemn terrorism in all of its forms.
So far, the US-Administration of President Barak Obama has also failed to take tangible steps with regard to using its influence to bring the foreign-backed “opposition” to the negotiating table in Geneva. The continuous support of the armed insurgents and failure to take tangible steps toward fulfilling the United States part of the US – Russian agreement to work towards holding the second international conference on Syria as soon as possible, has prompted Russia´s Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov to say:
“If our US partners are currently putting the emphasis in the Syrian issue on arming the opposition and the release of plans, which, judging by everything, are being prepared, to strike the Syrian government’s positions, then this does not comply with but contradicts the agreement to hold a conference without preliminary conditions.”
”Even if these steps, according to Washington’s perceptions, can create the environment conducive to organizing the international conference on Syria, they in fact contradict our joint initiative”.
The war in Syria, which is now in its 30th month, has according to latest UN figures cost the lives of more than 100.000, has displaced hundreds of thousands more, and has developed into a regional, low-intensity conflict, which risks to destabilize the region for decades.