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Sarin or similar toxin used in Idlib attack: chemical watchdog
20 April 2017, 05:43 | Kelvin Horton
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Ayrault said of the April 4 attack in Khan Sheikhun: 'We have elements that will allow us to show that the regime knowingly used chemical weapons.
The officials delivered the assessment Wednesday, weeks after a chemical attack in Syria killed at least 90 people.
The movement of the aircraft to the air base at Bassel Al-Assad International Airport began shortly after the US's April 6 Tomahawk cruise missile strike on Shayrat air base, which destroyed some 24 Syrian warplanes in retaliation for a chemical weapons attack that the USA says Syria launched from that airfield.
But the global community has overwhelmingly placed blame for the chemical weapons attack on the Assad regime.
The assessment was confirmed by two other defense officials.
He spoke on condition of anonymity under military briefing rules.
Assad has strongly denied he was behind the attack in the opposition-held town of Khan Sheikhoun in Syria's northern Idlib province, and has accused the opposition of trying to frame his government.
The US warned Moscow via a pre-established military-to-military communications channel in advance of its April 6 cruise missile strike in order to prevent any Russian casualties.
David Cameron had previously lost a Commons vote by 285 to 272 for military action against the Syrian government in the wake of a sarin attack that left hundreds of civilians dead on the outskirts of Damascus. One has to wonder whether his sudden awakening to the hardship being experienced by Syria's people might even extend to its refugee population.
Senior Israeli defence officials believe Assad could possess up to three tons of chemical weapons, it was reported today.
In an address to British MPs on Tuesday, Johnson said the UK government has not taken any decision yet but would find it "very difficult" to reject a request from the United States regarding attacks on Syria.
The move places the Syrian aircraft in close proximity to Russia's Khmeimim Air Base - where the majority of Russian air forces helping ally Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime are based - in Latakia Governorate, Syria.
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