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CBRN Assessment

US punishes Syria for apparent sarin attack

06 April 2017

Syria effectively confirmed that it has retained a nerve agent capability even though it has signed the Convention on Chemical Weapons (CW) when it carried out an attack that killed and injured hundreds of civilians on 4 April, but the United States has sent a clear signal that any further use will not be tolerated.

The US military responded to the attack on Khan Shaykhun early on 7 April by launching 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles against Al-Shayrat Air Base, saying the aircraft that dropped chemical weapons on the town operated from the base.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the US government has a "very high degree of confidence" that the Syrian military used sarin against Khan Shaykhun as well as in attacks in Hamah province on 25 and 30 March.

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