MOSCOW, April 5 Russia will argue at the United
Nations that an apparent chemical attack that left scores dead
in Syria was in fact contamination caused by rebels' chemical
munitions, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.
Russia has already suggested it would publicly stand by
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
"Russia and its armed forces will continue their operations
to support the anti-terrorist operations of Syria's armed forces
to free the country," Peskov told reporters.
"In our work with the Security Council, Russia will, as part
of its argument, present the facts which have already been laid
out by our defence ministry," he added.
A Russian defence ministry statement said earlier that
poison gas which killed scores of people in northwestern Syria
had leaked from an insurgent chemical-weapons depot after Syrian
warplanes hit it.
Washington, Paris and London have drawn up a draft U.N.
Security Council statement condemning the attack and demanding
an investigation. Russia has the power to veto it, as it has
done to block all previous resolutions that would harm Assad.
(Reporting by Maria Tsvetkova; writing by Sujata Rao; Editing
by Christian Lowe)