MOSCOW, April 15 (Xinhua) -- Recent media reports claiming the Syrian opposition had used toxic gases must be investigated before drawing any conclusions, a senior Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) official said Tuesday.
There were mechanisms for the investigation into such incidents, visiting OPCW Director-General Ahmet Uzumcu told Rossiya-24 TV Channel, adding the OPCW mission had not yet been sent to Syria, so he could not confirm or deny recent reports of another chemical weapons attack there.
On Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said sponsors of extremists in Syria should be held accountable for the most recent use of chemical weapons in the country, and any reports of their use must be investigated.
Lavrov, who met Uzumcu on Monday, referred to a Syrian state television report that the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front had allegedly used toxic gas in the province of Hama, killing at least two people and leaving about 100 others ill.
Uzumcu said during the TV interview the removal of chemical weapons from Syria was due to be completed by April 27.
The Syrian government had taken full control of chemical weapons storage and no unauthorized access to those depots was possible, he said, adding remaining problems were purely technical and could be solved.
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UNITED NATIONS, April 14 (Xinhua) -- The international mission in charge of removing chemical weapons in Syria has voiced its concerns that Syria has missed the April 13 deadline, which Damascus pledged to get rid of all its stockpiles of chemical weapons by Sunday, a UN spokesman told reporters here Monday. Full story