Zee Media Bureau/Supriya Jha
Moscow: In what is set to widen the divide between the West and Russia over Syria, Moscow on Wednesday expressed “disappointment” over a UN report into Syria chemical attacks, saying it was incomplete and “preconceived”.
The latest remarks by Russian deputy Foreign Minister come after reports said that Syria had handed over fresh evidences to Russia which prove that Syrian rebels and not Assad regime was behind the August 21 attack in Syria’s Ghouta suburb.
"We are disappointed, to put it mildly, about the approach taken by the UN secretariat and the U.N. inspectors, who prepared the report selectively and incompletely," deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told the state-run Russian news agency RIA in Damascus.
Further slamming UN experts for not seeing the complete picture and dishing out a prejudiced report, Ryabkov said, "Without receiving a full picture of what is happening here, it is impossible to call the nature of the conclusions reached by the UN experts ... anything but politicised, preconceived and one-sided”.
Ryabkov said that there were three instances of chemical attacks prior to this one which were not looked into.
The UN report made by chemical inspectors released Monday confirmed the use of deadly nerve agent Sarin gas on August 21, but it did not apportion blame on anyone.
Welcoming it, Britain, France and the United States said that the UN report confirmed Syria regime’s role in chemical attacks, but Russia says that Syria has handed it the evidences proving rebels’ role.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that the UN inspectors should have taken into account all the evidences available from various sources while preparing the report.
However, US President Barack Obama said it was "inconceivable" that anyone other than the Syrian regime could have carried out the attack
The US and France were in favour of a military strike on Syria but a deal hashed out by US-Russia to eliminate Syria`s chemical arsenal by mid-2014 in Geneva ignited hopes of a peaceful solution of the issue without war.
The UNSC permanent members Britain, France, US, China and Russia remain divided over the text of a resolution that would back the chemical disarmament agreement.
The recent disparity between the West and Russia is set to deepen the fissures already existing among the five veto-wielding members of the UNSC and may create problems in the way of peaceful resolution of Syria chemical weapons issue.