OPCW experts expected to arrive in Douma on Wednesday

OPCW experts expected to arrive in Douma on Wednesday

The worldwide team has been in the country since Saturday, but has not been allowed to visit Douma, the BBC reported.

British Prime Minister Theresa May is claiming the Russians blocked the OPCW, saying that Russia and Syria are "not cooperating".

A photo released early on April 14, 2018 on the website of the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows anti aircraft fire on the outskirts of Damascus after Western strikes reportedly hit Syrian military bases and chemical research centres in and around the capital.

Moscow blamed the delay on the air strikes, in which the United States, France and Britain targeted what the Pentagon said were three chemical weapons facilities.

Russia - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's main military backer - denied interfering with evidence at the site of the suspected chemical attack, asserting that it has consistently supported an investigation into the suspected gas attack.

The press conference also came after the he Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons held emergency talks on the alleged atrocity, which prompted Western air strikes on Syria on Saturday, and Russian Federation and Syria stalled access to Douma citing security concerns.

The attack, which killed more than 40 people, has drawn worldwide outrage and prompted the U.S. and its allies to consider a military strike on Syria, something Moscow has strongly warned against.

"I can guarantee that Russian Federation has not tampered with the site", Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told the BBC.

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Russian military officials were at the site of the Douma attack days before the OPCW reached Damascus, leading to fears that the site might have been tampered with.

"They will go directly to any sort of companies that were dealing with equipment related to Assad and chemical-weapons use", Haley said. The suspicion is that the Syrian government previously misled inspectors when it declared its entire chemical weapons stockpile had been disclosed and destroyed.

OPCW inspectors have been attacked on two previous missions to the sites of chemical weapons attacks in Syria.

The trio of Western powers that carried out the strikes warned they would repeat the operation if Damascus used chemical weapons again.

Medical student Marwan Jaber said no chemical weapons were used on April 7. "They were given routine treatment", he told AFP.

Moscow vowed on Monday not to interfere in the work of a fact-finding mission sent to Syria by the global chemical arms watchdog to probe an alleged poison gas attack in Douma.

Russian ambassador Shulgin repeated the accusations telling reporters in The Hague that Douma residents had not been able to produce "a single body".

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