International concern over claims of chemical weapon attack in Syria

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From The Guardian:

“The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is seriously concerned about claims that at least 93 people were killed by a gas attack in central Syria when airstrikes hit a cluster of five villages.

Up to 300 people were also reported to have been injured in the strikes on Monday morning around 130 miles west of the city of Palmyra, which was retaken from Syrian forces by the Islamic State group. Witnesses to the attacks say that none of those who died had blast injuries.

“Most of the dead were families,” said Ahmad al Hamawi, head of a regional council. “They had built primitive shelters and they ran to them, not knowing it was poison gas. While they were in the shelters the gas entered because of the wind direction, and killed dozens, mostly women and children.”

The high death toll is not consistent with the spate of chlorine gas attacks across Syria in recent years, which have killed scores of people in total but have not caused mass casualties at this scale.”

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