November 8, 2017 / 2:30 PM / a year ago

France, Britain, U.S, Germany demand UN extend mandate on Syria chemical probe

PARIS, Nov 8 (Reuters) - France, Britain, the U.S. and Germany called on the U.N. Security Council to renew the mandate of an international inquiry into chemical weapons’ attacks in Syria, and urged for a strong signal to ensure those responsible were held accountable.

“We ... urge the United Nations Security Council to maintain the investigative capacity of JIM,” said the statement from the countries’ four foreign ministers. “We also call on the OPCW Executive Council to take action in response to the JIM report to send an unequivocal signal that those responsible for the use of chemical weapons will be held accountable.”

Russia said on Tuesday that it opposed a draft U.N. resolution to extend the mandate of the investigation by the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons — known as the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) into chemical weapons attacks in Syria.

Its last report had singled out forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad as being responsible for an attack on April 4. (Reporting by John Irish; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)

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