May 14, 2019; updated November 30, 2019 (German)
Professor Tim Hayward of Edinburgh University yesterday published an OPCW technical report that had previously been kept secret. The report concludes that a staging by militias is the “only plausible explanation” for the alleged poison gas attack of April 2018 in the Syrian Douma.
The report appears to definitively refute the official narrative of Douma – circulated by media and experts close to NATO – which claimed a Syrian attack. Already prior to this, considerable doubts arose on the basis of statements by local witnesses and a BBC producer.
The US, the UK and France used the supposed Syrian poison gas attack as justification for a series of airstrikes against the country. Despite that, the Syrian army eventually recaptured Douma.
The reason for the official secrecy of the now leaked report was not given. The OPCW had previously been led by a Turkish diplomat and former NATO official, while the responsible UN Department of Political Affairs was headed by a US diplomat formerly serving in Iraq.
Only last week, the supreme media authority of Switzerland, UBI, ruled that the coverage of Douma by Swiss television RTS had not been “propaganda”. This assessment may now be obsolete, too.
Indeed, contrary to many media reports, there is still no evidence that the Syrian army used any chemical weapons during the Syrian war. The corresponding accusations have ultimately been based on allegations by anti-government militias.
Update May 16: The OPCW has confirmed the authenticity of the report and announced an „internal investigation about the unauthorised release of the document“.
Update May 26: Former MIT scientist and Pentagon advisor Theodore Postol confirmed the report.
Update November 24: An email published by Wikileaks reveals further OPCW manipulation.