The Findings of the First Report on al Latamena City Match the Findings of the SNHR
I. The SNHR’s Database on the Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria Is at the Disposal of Justice and Towards Accountability:
In January 2020, the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) formally signed a Principles of Cooperation agreement with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons’ (OPCW) Investigation and Identification Team (IIT), enabling SNHR to contribute to the investigations into the incidents that the team is currently conducting and will conduct in the future; the SNHR possesses an extensive database documenting the use of chemical weapons in Syria, having monitored their use extensively since the SNHR first documented use of this weapon in December 2012 until the last attack in al Kbaina in Latakia suburbs on May 19, 2019.
The mandate of the OPCW was expanded in June 2018, enabling it since then to identify the perpetrators of chemical attacks, after its previous mandate since its founding on April 29, 1997, remained limited to confirming or denying the use of chemical weapons without identifying the perpetrators.
The SNHR fully supports the mandate and work of the IIT, and confirms that these investigations are an essential part of the process of holding those involved in the use of weapons of mass destruction in Syria accountable and prosecuting them, as well as ensuring that they do not enjoy impunity and exposing their lies and crimes, and ensuring that the international community takes responsibility for punishing them, as stipulated in Article 8 of the Chemical Weapons Convention.
The OPCW’s Committee and its working groups have been subjected to relentless and violent defamation and slanderous accusations led by Russia in several political, diplomatic and media levels, with Russia harnessing great material capabilities for this purpose, with the aim of protecting its ally the Syrian regime, which is involved in the use of chemical weapons in Syria, and even of protecting Russia itself since it supports the Syrian regime and justifies the violations perpetrated by the regime over the course of the past nine years and up to the present moment, which constitute crimes against humanity and war crimes; this diplomatic, political, and military protection of a regime involved in the use of weapons of mass destruction and war crimes means that anyone supporting or defending it is a partner and accomplice in these crimes and is thus subject to prosecution in accordance with international law.