© Hummam Sheikh Ali/Global Look Press
Der er "ingen tvivl" om at militante planlægger et falskt flag kemisk våbenangreb i Syriens Idlib provins, sagde Ruslands udenrigsminister Sergey Lavrov, idet han tilføjede, at Moskva har afleveret beviser om plottet til FN og OPCW.

"Vi har indgivet konkrete kendsgerninger opnået fra forskellige kilder både til FN og til Haag, hvor OPCW (Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons) har hovedkvarter," sagde Lavrov, idet han talte om risikoen for et falsk flag angreb, der involverede brugen af kemiske våben i Syrien, og tilføjede at "disse kendsgerninger stemmer overens."

Lavrov sagde "at der ikke er nogen tvivl om, at en sådan provokation er under forberedelse." Han forklarede at terroristgrupper forskanset i Syriens nordvestlige provins, herunder Al-Nusra (nu kendt som Tahrir al-Sham), prøver at afspore adskillelsen af terrorister fra andre væbnede grupper "på enhver mulig måde."

The foreign minister also said that Russia would continue to support Damascus in its fight against terrorists and is open about its actions. "We have no plans to conceal what we do to back the Syrian government, which is liberating its land from terrorists to [allow] the Syrian citizens to return to... normal life as soon as possible," Lavrov told journalists during a joint press conference with Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh Mohammed in Sochi.

Earlier, Russia's representative to the OPCW, Aleksandr Shulgin, told journalists that Moscow had handed evidence of the planned false-flag attack to the OPCW Director General Fernando Arias. The Syrian government also sent its own data to the OPCW, he added, while warning that the attack could be staged "at any moment."

Moscow has previously accused Washington of helping militants with a false-flag plot with a view to blaming the Syrian authorities for the attack and thus justify new airstrikes against Syria. The planned airstrike is allegedly a lot larger in scale than the one carried out by the US, the UK and France in April.

Russia's Defense Ministry has said that the chemicals needed for the fake attack have been already delivered to the area, citing sources on the ground. It accused the White Helmets group of assisting the terrorists with the delivery.