Iran Daily: Tehran’s Caution Over Assad’s Chemical Attack


In a notable show of caution, Iran has belatedly issued a limited — and far from supportive — response over Syrian President Assad’s latest use of chemical weapons.

After more than 24 hours of silence over Tuesday’s attack that killed more than 100 people in Khan Sheikhoun in northwest Syria, the Iranian Foreign Ministry finally issued a statement.

Significantly, Iran — the Syrian regime’s essential ally since the Syrian uprising began in March 2011 — did not deny Assad’s responsibility. Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said, “We strongly condemn any use of chemical weapons, irrespective of who used them or their victims.”

Qassemi then spoke in a series of general assertions to argue against a quick response to the attack. He said that the “catastrophe” was not the first of its kind in Syria, and then said that dealing with the “tragedy” should not be based on “double standards, rash judgment, and propaganda purposes” to “reinforce the political demands of certain sides”.

The spokesman did give try to give some cover for Assad by claiming that the Syrian regime had handed over its chemical stocks and that “it was now time for disarming terrorist groups”.

He expressed Iran’s readiness to treat the victims of the attack.

TOP PHOTO: Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi

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  1. Yes, Dr. Lucas, Assad has handed over his entire stockpile of nerve agents, so how can he be blamed for the attack in Idlib (if it was a nerve agent)?

      • Ah, so Assad reneged on his agreement to hand over all of his stockpile and so there is now a pretext and justification to go to war with Damascus, right? But why did he dilute the sarin with chlorine gas, as you allege? You still haven’t provided any reason as to why the attack on KS was carried out. What objective was served other than killing babies (but not jihadist rebels strangely enough)?

        • “Although the OPCW has confirmed the destruction of well over 90 percent of Syria’s chemical weapons program, there remain serious questions over Damascus’s claims that it has eliminated all its chemical weapons munitions, as well as precursors of deadly agents, including ricin, and nerve agents such as sarin, VX, and soman, according to the classified report. The chemical weapons inspectors suggest that without a dramatic improvement in Syrian cooperation, the world may never know for certain just how many toxic, nerve, and blister agents the Assad regime may have squirreled away.”

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