France’s foreign minister called on Tuesday for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council to discuss an alleged chemical attack in Khan Shaykhun in the Syrian militant-held province of Idlib, Reuters reported, citing France’s foreign minister.
“A new and particularly serious chemical attack took place this morning in Idlib province. The first information suggests a large number of victims, including children. I condemn this disgusting act,” Reuters quoted Jean-Marc Ayrault’s statement.
According to various pro-militant sources, the attack resulted in killing of up to 58 people and injuring over 200 others (a detailed article on the topic is here).
Following the chemical attack, an alleged airstrike targeted an alleged hospital treating victims of the chemical attack.
Breaking footage shows the moment of airstrike on the Syrian hospital treating victims of the chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun, Idlib. pic.twitter.com/QoGDIpOvV3
— Sakir Khader (@sakirkhader) April 4, 2017
So, now there are 3 main versinos of the Tuesday events:
1. Pro-militant sources argue that the Assad government believed that the miltiary victory over Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and its allies during a large-scale northern Hama battle was not enough. This is why it decided to use chemical weapons to pound civilians in Idlib. The “bloody” Syrian-Russian-Iranian alliance has no problems. So, it just uses chemical weapons here and there.
If it was indeed Sarin agent used, it would be bad news for these responders. Direct contact with hands is strictly no go in case of Sarin. pic.twitter.com/WoS5Nisx9o
— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@CT_operative) April 4, 2017
2. Militants and their helpers from the so-called White Helmets used chemical weapons themselves during the Syrian Air Force’s raids in the Idlib countryside. It’s important to note that according to “pro-opposition” outlets, chemical weapons were dropped from a warplane. Indeed, this is very questionable.
3. Some pro-government sources argue that the Syrian Air Force bombed a chemical weapons plant (or depot) in the village of Khan Shaykhun. Update [5.04.2017]: The Russian Defense Ministry supported this version in its statement. (LINK)
In any case, the incident will be widely used by the mainstream media and the “friends of Syria” in order to continue support of militant groups (a majrity of them is directly linked or cooperating with al-Qaeda) operating in the province of Idlib. This will also complicate searching of any kind of peaceful solution on the diplomatic level. It’s hard to believe that Damascus, Tehran and Moscow are interested in these developments.
In any case, the incident has to be independently investigated and the real reason of civilian casualties have to be found.