Syria Won’t Admit Chemical Weapons Investigators

Officials objected to giving them access to secret information

According to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the Syrian government has refused to admit a team of investigators who were meant to identify specific culprits in past alleged chemical weapons attacks.

There was a previous joint investigations team that already investigated those incidents, and issued conclusions. That team’s mandate ended in November 2017, and over objections by Syria and Russia, this new team was formed to try to pin the attacks on somebody.

The previous team concluded Syrian forces had used banned agents in some attacks, and blamed ISIS for a mustard gas attack. Syrian officials said they considered the matter done with that team, and didn’t want to give the new team access to all sorts of secret documents just to keep the investigation open.

Syria’s Deputy Foreign Minister has twice issued warnings about their opposition to the team in May, and made it clear once again this week that they don’t intend to issue any travel documents to the new team.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of