Russia: Extremists Struck Syrian Chemical-Arms Shipment

None

Global Security Newswire Staff
Jan. 31, 2014, 5:53 a.m.

A Rus­si­an of­fi­cial said ex­trem­ists un­suc­cess­fully tar­geted a chem­ic­al-arms ship­ment pri­or to its re­mov­al from Syr­ia this week, the Voice of Rus­sia re­ports.

“Dur­ing the re­mov­al of the second con­sign­ment of chem­ic­al weapons on Jan. 27, 2014, the con­voy car­ry­ing them was at­tacked by mil­it­ants. The at­tack was de­feated,” Rus­si­an For­eign Min­istry Se­cur­ity and Dis­arm­a­ment De­part­ment Dir­ect­or Mikhail Uly­an­ov said in com­ments re­por­ted on Fri­day.

Uly­an­ov de­scribed the pos­sible strike as he ar­gued that Syr­ia’s gov­ern­ment is jus­ti­fied in mov­ing slowly to send its chem­ic­al-war­fare stocks out of the con­flict-torn na­tion. The United States on Thursday ac­cused Mo­scow’s ally in Dam­as­cus of de­lib­er­ately delay­ing ship­ments in the in­ter­na­tion­al op­er­a­tion to fully elim­in­ate its chem­ic­al ar­sen­al by the end of June.

The Rus­si­an of­fi­cial at­trib­uted the ef­fort’s slow pace to “the un­fa­vor­able se­cur­ity situ­ation on the route for trans­port­ing chem­ic­al weapons com­pon­ents … to Latakia,” where they are to be picked up by for­eign trans­port ves­sels and trans­ferred over­seas for de­struc­tion, Re­u­ters re­por­ted.

“We see that the Syr­i­ans are ap­proach­ing the ful­fill­ment of their ob­lig­a­tions ser­i­ously and in good faith,” the wire ser­vice sep­ar­ately quoted him as say­ing in an in­ter­view with In­ter­fax.

Syr­i­an Pres­id­ent Bashar As­sad’s gov­ern­ment is “com­plain­ing about in­suf­fi­cient ma­ter­i­al and tech­nic­al sup­port from the in­ter­na­tion­al com­munity,” noted Uly­an­ov, de­scrib­ing the re­cent con­voy at­tack­ers as “rad­ic­al op­pos­i­tion.” “It is not ruled out that Rus­sia will be able to al­loc­ate something ad­di­tion­al,” the Voice of Rus­sia quoted him as say­ing.

Wash­ing­ton and in­ter­na­tion­al au­thor­it­ies, though, this week said Dam­as­cus already has suf­fi­cient equip­ment to move the ma­ter­i­als faster.

“While the two ship­ments (of chem­ic­als) this month rep­res­ent a start, the need for the pro­cess to pick up pace is ob­vi­ous,” Ah­met Üzüm­cü, dir­ect­or gen­er­al of the Or­gan­iz­a­tion for the Pro­hib­i­tion of Chem­ic­al Weapons, told his agency’s 41-na­tion gov­ern­ing body on Thursday.

“Ways and means must be found to es­tab­lish con­tinu­ity and pre­dict­ab­il­ity of ship­ments to as­sure states parties that the pro­gram, while delayed, is not de­ferred,” he ad­ded in pre­pared com­ments.

In­ter­na­tion­al con­cerns grew over the use of chem­ic­al arms in Syr­ia fol­low­ing an Au­gust sar­in-gas strike in a Dam­as­cus sub­urb held by As­sad’s op­pon­ents. Weeks later, his gov­ern­ment ac­know­ledged hold­ing chem­ic­al arms and pledged to re­lin­quish the stock­pile.

What We're Following See More »
A DARK CLOUD OVER TRUMP?
Snowstorm Could Impact Primary Turnout
2 days ago
THE LATEST

A snowstorm is supposed to hit New Hampshire today and “linger into Primary Tuesday.” GOP consultant Ron Kaufman said lower turnout should help candidates who have spent a lot of time in the state tending to retail politicking. Donald Trump “has acknowledged that he needs to step up his ground-game, and a heavy snowfall could depress his figures relative to more organized candidates.”

Source:
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
A Shake-Up in the Offing in the Clinton Camp?
2 days ago
THE DETAILS

Anticipating a primary loss in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Hillary and Bill Clinton “are considering staffing and strategy changes” to their campaign. Sources tell Politico that the Clintons are likely to layer over top officials with experienced talent, rather than fire their staff en masse.

Source:
THE LAST ROUND OF NEW HAMPSHIRE POLLS
Trump Is Still Ahead, but Who’s in Second?
1 days ago
THE LATEST

We may not be talking about New Hampshire primary polls for another three-and-a-half years, so here goes:

  • American Research Group’s tracking poll has Donald Trump in the lead with 30% support, followed by Marco Rubio and John Kasich tying for second place at 16%. On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders leads Hillary Clinton 53%-41%.
  • The 7 News/UMass Lowell tracking poll has Trump way out front with 34%, followed by Rubio and Ted Cruz with 13% apiece. Among the Democrats, Sanders is in front 56%-40%.
  • A Gravis poll puts Trump ahead with 28%, followed by Kasich with 17% and Rubio with 15%.
IT’S ALL ABOUT SECOND PLACE
CNN Calls the Primary for Sanders and Trump
1 days ago
THE LATEST

Well that didn’t take long. CNN has already declared Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump the winners of the New Hampshire primary, leaving the rest of the candidates to fight for the scraps. Five minutes later, the Associated Press echoed CNN’s call.

Source:
×