Russia insists on impartial probe into Aug 21 events outside Damascus, believes this was provocation - Lavrov

Russia insists on an unbiased and impartial investigation into the August 21 events outside Damascus, as it has serious reasons to believe that what is considered by many to be a chemical weapons attack by the government forces was in fact an act of provocation, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

Russia insists on an unbiased and impartial investigation into the August 21 events outside Damascus, as it has serious reasons to believe that what is considered by many to be a chemical weapons attack by the government forces was in fact an act of provocation, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

"We want the August 21 events to be investigated in an unbiased, impartial, and professional way. We have very serious reasons to believe that this was an act of provocation," Lavrov said at a press conference following negotiations with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius on Tuesday.

Lavrov pointed out that some of Russia's Western partners "have stated categorically that only the regime could have used these chemical weapons."

"But the truth must be found, and this will be a kind of litmus test for the Security Council's further work," he said.

There are two ways, one of them being "to cling to Chapter VII [of the UN Charter] when someone says that the regime or the opposition used chemical weapons," but this would amount to yielding to emotions, which is unacceptable in making serious decisions, Lavrov said.

"Or else we should rely on professionals, who should carefully examine each count and each report of this kind in an impartial and unbiased way and report the final picture to the UN Security Council," he said.

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