Inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) have begun inspections in Douma, in metro Damascus, related to an alleged chemical weapons attack earlier this month. It’s not the calm environment they might have hoped for.
Chemical (OPCW) inspectorsThe probe had been advocated from the start by Syria and Russia, who both maintain the chemical attack never took place. It comes just two days after the US and its allies attacked Syria, including Damascus, over the alleged incident.
The Western strikes did not hit Douma, so the site should still be intact for investigators. The attacking nations had objected to an investigation at the UN Security Council, however.
Russia’s Ambassador assured the OPCW last week that both Russia and Syria are committed to protecting the inspectors during the probe. Some officials speculated that to prevent the investigation the Douma site would be struck, so as to prevent the investigation.
The investigation could be embarrassing for the US-led coalition. The attacks came before the investigation even took place and may ultimately discredit the incident that was supposed to be the pretext for attacking Syria.


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