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News number: 9107158998

10:24 | 2013-04-09

Foriegn Policy

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Iran Criticizes UN for Delay in Dispatch of Fact Finding Team to Syria

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Mohammad Mehdi Akhoundzadeh strongly condemned the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian armed rebels in Aleppo city last month, and criticized the UN's delayed dispatch of a fact finding team to the Muslim country.

Akhoundzadeh made the remarks in a meeting with the chairman of the 3rd Conference of Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) Ahmet Uzumcu in Berlin on Monday.

Last month, terrorists fired a rocket containing chemical substances in the Khan al-Assal area of rural Aleppo and reports indicated that around 25 people were killed, most of them civilians. Syria immediately asked for an independent investigation into the use of chemical weapons by militants in Aleppo.

"More than three weeks passed now since the Syrian government has asked the UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-moon to dispatch a UN fact finding team in collaboration with OPCW to Syria, but unfortunately, such a team has not been sent there as yet, while it is necessary to avoid any delay in this respect," Akhoundzadeh said

Iran called on the UN last month to adopt proper measures to prevent terrorists from using chemical weapons against the Syrian people again.

Iranian top diplomat Ali Akbar Salehi urged the United Nations to condemn the use of chemical weapons by the terrorists against the Syrian nation.

In a letter to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, he condemned the terrorist act of the Syrian rebels in using chemical weapons against the nation, and called on the international body to adopt preventive measures to stop repetition of such accidents.

Later, Ban Ki-moon announced the decision for conducting an independent investigation into the terrorist chemical attack.

"I have decided to conduct a United Nations investigation into the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria," Ban told reporters in his office on Thursday, adding that "I intend for this investigation to start as soon as practically possible."

The chemical attack came after a video footage posted on the internet late in January showed that the armed militants in Syria possessed canisters containing chemical substances.

The foreign-sponsored militants had earlier released footage in which rabbits were killed by inhaling poisonous gas.