CBRN Assessment

Syrian government's chemical weapons use has enough Russian shielding and US acquiescence to make further use likely

05 April 2017


On 4 April 2017, Syrian opposition channels carried videos and images of civilians in Khan Sheikhun suffering symptoms consistent with poisoning by nerve agents.

More than 50 people were reported killed. With the exception of an isolated incident in 2014, IHS Markit has not recorded any use of such agents by the opposition. The ordnance appears to have been delivered by air according to witnesses, and the opposition lacks any aerial capability. Russia has claimed that the government bombed a manufacturing facility for chemicals, but there is no evidence that the opposition has the capability to manufacture such weapons.

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