Syria News: US Ally France Mastermind Behind Ghouta Chemical Attack 2013
The latest incriminating claims in Syria news concerns the Syrian regime holding U.S. ally France responsible for the chemical attacks at Ghouta in 2013.Advertisement
The accusation was made during a heated session in the UN Security Council on the Syrian civil war.
Syria News: Chemical Attacks of 2013
The chemical attacks on Ghouta, Syria, took place during the Syrian Civil War on August 21, 2013. Rockets with chemical agent sarin hit the two opposition-controlled areas in the suburbs around Damascus, Syria, according to BBC.
It was reported then that the first use of chemical weapons was made at 02:45 local time on August 21 in Ein Tarma, about 3.7 miles east off the center of Damascus. The second attack took place at 02:47 local time in Zamalka, an adjoining district. Again, at 5:00 local time, Muadhamiya, a town 12 miles west of Zamalka, was struck by rockets.
The attacks resulted to large numbers of sick adults and children with no signs of external injury, as seen in videos uploaded back then. There were footage that shows graphic visuals of dozens of bodies, including children and babies, placed on floors of clinics, mosques, and on streets.
According to these videos, symptoms seen among victims included disorientation, shortness of breath, eye irritation, runny nose, general weakness, blurred vision, nausea, vomiting and eventual loss of consciousness. All symptoms were consistent with exposure to a nerve agent.
The reported death toll wasn’t exact. Assessments were done by several bodies like Human Rights Watch, the U.S. government, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, and more. According to these assessments, the death toll was somewhere between 500 to 1,429.
A map was plotted by the Human Rights Watch, and the rocket’s trajectories were calculated. After these were done, Human Rights Watch said that trajectories showed a source site, a huge military base on Mount Qassioun, home to the Republican Guard 104th Brigade.
The global reaction to the attacks was the most essential part of this issue. The U.S. and Britain both wanted to work out a military intervention inside Syria. However, in the early stage, both countries were discouraged to administer a military intervention. Russia and Iraq both condemned the United States’ plan to attack Syria, a plan supported by France.
British Prime Minister David Cameron was asked by the House of Commons to cancel his plans of military intervention inside Syria. However, in 2014, the Framework for Elimination of Syrian Chemical Weapons, aimed to disarm Syria of chemical weapons, was adopted by the U.S. Both Russia and the U.S. agreed and signed it.
A coalition of countries led by U.S. and France was on the verge of carrying out air strikes on Syria in response to the 2013 Ghouta chemical weapon attacks. The attack escalated the war in Syria and catapulted the situation where other countries, including the United States, stepped into the war.
Syria News: Syria Blames France
During a session of UN Security Council on the Syrian civil war, Dr Bashar al-Jaafari stated that the 2013 Ghouta chemical attacks were arranged and implemented by French intelligence agencies.
According to the Independent, the chemical attacks were orchestrated as part of a plot to distract UN weapons inspectors from incidents blamed on rebels. With all the blaming, the Syrian regime had been denying involvement in the chemical attacks since it took place.
“The use of chemical weapons in the Damascus area was meant to prevent from Dr Åke Sellström from going to Aleppo because [France] knew who had used chemical weapons in Aleppo,” al-Jaafari, said.
“They wanted to prevent Dr Sellström from reaching Aleppo by any means and therefore they used chemical weapons in Damascus with the involvement of French intelligence.”
Syria News: France’s Response Then And Now
However, in 2013, French intelligence stated that the attack could not have been planned and orchestrated by anyone but the Syrian government. According to them, the rockets were launched from areas held by the regime, while rebels were holding the zones that were hit.
Adding to the above statement, the Israeli intelligence stated that they had intercepted communications from Syrian officials, which indicated that the government was responsible for the attack.
In response to the current accusation done by the Syrian regime, François Delattre, France’s representative to the Security Council, established the accusations as “absurd.”