Leaked OPCW Report: Douma Was Staged

Published: May 2019
Updated: March 2020
Languages: English, German

A British academic working group has 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.

Contrary to many Western 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 unverifiable allegations by anti-government militias.


May 2019: The OPCW has confirmed the authenticity of the report and announced an “internal investigation about the unauthorised release of the document”. Former MIT scientist and Pentagon advisor Theodore Postol confirmed the veracity of the leaked report.

November 2019: An email published by Wikileaks reveals further OPCW manipulations.

March 2020: Several new leaks and OPCW whistleblowers have confirmed the manipulations.

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