Syria invites OPCW to investigate alleged chemical attack in Douma

Syria invites OPCW to investigate alleged chemical attack in Douma

The Syrian government has invited the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to send a team to investigate allegations of a chemical attack in the eastern Ghouta town of Douma, state media reported on Tuesday.

The suspected chemical weapons attack late on Saturday killed at least 60 people, with more than 1,000 injured at several sites in Douma, a town near the capital, Damascus, according to the Union of Medical Care Organizations.

The Syrian medical aid group is partly funded by Western governments and operates in opposition areas.

The Syrian government and its ally Russia have denied involvement in any such attack.

“Syria is keen on cooperating with the OPCW to uncover the truth behind the allegations that some western sides have been advertising to justify their aggressive intentions,” state news agency SANA said, quoting an official source in the Foreign Ministry.

On Monday, Russia and Syria both offered during the U.N. Security Council meeting to take OPCW investigators to Douma. In Tuesday’s statement, the government said it was ready to offer all assistance needed for the mission to fulfil its task.

It also called on the mission to operate “in a full transparent manner and to rely on solid and credible evidence,” the statement cited by state media added. (Reuters)

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubei says responsible for a suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria must be held accountable. Talking to reporters in Paris on Tuesday, he said Saudi Arabia is greatly concerned about the attack.

Later, Britain Prime Minister Theresa May's office says Britain, France and the United States are determined that those behind a chemical weapons attack in Syria will be held accountable. (AP)