Russia said on Tuesday it had information that the United States planned to bomb the government quarter in Damascus on an invented pretext, and said it would respond militarily if it felt Russian lives were threatened by such an attack.
The United States wants the United Nations Security Council to create a new inquiry into who is to blame for chemical weapons attacks in Syria, and U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said on Thursday she hopes to put it to a vote as early as next week.
The Foreign Ministry fears poison gas may leak into Israel if the Assad regime uses chemical weapons against rebels near the Golan Heights, and has reported warned of a punishing response should such a situation unfold.
The village of Jamraya is located several kilometers northeast of Damascus, near a large military and research complex. The entrance to the well-guarded facility is likely permitted exclusively to people who have been checked and approved by Syria's internal security apparatuses.
Amnesty International has accused the Assad regime of showing “utter contempt” of international law following a chlorine gas attack on the town of Saraqib Sunday. This latest chemical attack comes just one day before the U.N. Security Council failed to agree on a U.S.-proposed statement Monday condemning the continued use of chemical weapons in the war-torn nation. Russia was blamed by some diplomats for its failure.
Germany’s Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control approved a license for a company to sell military applicable technology to Iranian companies that subsequently was used in Syrian regime chemical weapons attacks, reported the German publication Bild on Monday.
Russia’s UN ambassador said Wednesday the expert body that has determined responsibility for chemical weapons attacks in Syria 'is dead' — but Moscow is ready to discuss 'a new mechanism.'
The United States is calling for a vote Thursday on a resolution that would extend the mandate of experts working to determine who was responsible for chemical attacks in Syria, which is likely to face Russian opposition.
The White House admonished Russia on Wednesday after it vetoed a United Nations plan to continue an ongoing investigation that recently found Syria killed dozens of people with chemical weapons and implored the international body to renew the probe.