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WikiLeaks says OPCW manipulated report on Syria chemical attack

WikiLeaks has released an email sent by a member of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in which its author has accused the watchdog of doctoring a report on a suspected chemical attack on Syria’s Douma.

According to Press TV, the Douma attack occurred in April last year at a time when the Syrian army was about to win the battle against foreign-backed terrorists there.

Western states were quick to blame the Syrian government for the attack, and one week later, the US, Britain and France launched a coordinated missile strike against sites and research facilities near Damascus and Homs.

In the email, dated June 22, 2018, the author who was a member of a fact-finding team the organization deployed to Douma to investigate the attack, said, “Many of the facts and observations outlined in the full version are inextricably interconnected and, by selectively omitting certain ones, an unintended bias has been introduced into the report, undermining its credibility.”

The author of the email also rejected as “highly misleading and not supported by facts” the OPCW claim that “sufficient evidence” was found to determine chlorine was “likely released” from cylinders they analyzed at two different locations in the Syrian city, dropped by government warplanes.

The author of the email said the samples the team analyzed were in contact with a chemical that consisted of a chlorine atom, which could have been a number of chemicals, and “purposely singling one of chlorine gas as one of the possibilities is disingenuous.”

The OPCW report said there were “high levels of various chlorinated organic derivatives … detected in environmental samples.”

“Describing the levels as ‘high’ likely overstates the extent of levels of chlorinated organic derivatives detected. They were, in most cases, present only in parts per billion range, as low as 1-2 ppb, which is essentially trace quantities,” the email reads.

The email’s author added that a section, which referred to the inconsistencies with the victim’s symptoms between what witnesses reported seeing, and what was seen in a video that circulated online, was omitted from the redacted report.