British officials are lying in saying they have asked Russia for help. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says Moscow has no information on what the compound is that caused the latest incident. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova says it is all a fit-up for political reasons.
A summer school at Uppsala University invited among other lecturers British journalist Vanessa Beeley, the author of the leading independent blog on the conflict in Syria. She talked about the methods of the Western media using deliberately false information, and stated that Russian journalists cover events more objectively than their Western counterparts
Beeley cited as an example the fake about chemical weapons allegedly used by the Syrian authorities in the Syrian city of Duma.
Vanessa Beeley is a well-known pro-Assad and pro-Kremlin public figure. She has eg visited Regime-held areas of Syria, often under the supervision of Syrian MPs and the Syrian Army. A piece purporting to expose the “egregious western media chemical weapon fraud in Eastern Ghouta” inadvertently details how regime officials are her only source and shepherd her around, ensuring they control what she is able to witness. www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/vanessa-beeley-syria-white-helmets_uk_5ad9b6cae4b03c426dad48a9?22,
In her lecture, she voiced many of the usual pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives which was highlighted and criticised later both by Swedish local media and Estonian professors and students attending the class. For example, she stated that 'The Soviet Union and its legal successor Russia have always tried to promote peace in the world', 'There was a free election over whether to join Russia in Crimea', 'There was no chemical attack in Douma this April. The attack was staged by the White Helmets' and 'Human Rights Watch is a zionost front organisation run by George Soros'. See our debunks about these pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives on our website eg here, here and here.
The Swedish University has issued a public apology for inviting Vanessa Beeley to the summer school and claims it was a mistake, something the Tsargrad article does not mention.
There are several reports that Syrian doctors are forced under pressure and threat to say that the chemical attack has not occurred. Interview with one of the witnesses took place at a Syrian army facility used by Russian military advisers. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/26/obscene-masquerade-russia-criticised-over-douma-chemical-attack-denial,https://theintercept.com/2018/04/26/russia-brings-syrians-hague-make-underwhelming-case-chemical-attack-fake/,https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/17/syria-crisis-medics-intimidated-over-douma-gas-attack
See our timeline of the ongoing pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign surrounding the Salisbury poisoning and the Douma chemical attack.
On 7 April 2018, a high number of civilians were killed in the besieged Syrian city of Douma, with evidence pointing towards another chemical attack by the regime, according to the EU.
See also Bellingcat's open source survey on the suspected chemical attack: https://www.bellingcat.com/news/mena/2018/04/11/open-source-survey-alleged-chemical-attacks-douma-7th-april-2018/https://www.bellingcat.com/news/mena/2018/04/29/pieces-matter-syrias-chlorine-bombs-douma-chemical-attack/
On April 10 Russia vetoed a U.S.-drafted U.N. Security Council resolution that would have created a new inquiry to ascertain responsibility for chemical weapons attacks in Syria.
UN-OPCW Joint Investigative Mechanism found Syria’s Government responsiblefor last year’s attack in Khan Shaykhun.
In September 2017, the UN Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic summarized 33 separate incidents where it had found use of chemical weapons. Since then there have been several additional suspected chemical attacks. Between March 2013 and March 2017, the Commission documented 25 incidents of chemical weapons use in the Syrian Arab Republic, of which 20 were proven to have been perpetrated by government forces and used primarily against civilians.