Allow me at the outset to start by congratulating the Permanent Representative of the friendly Republic of Niger, Ambassador Abdou Abari, on his country's assumption of the presidency of the Security Council for this month. I would like to thank Pak Dian Djani, the Permanent Representative of Indonesia, for his distinguished management of the Council's work during his presidency last month.
Mr. President, dear colleagues ..
You all remember that the Security Council closed the file of the so-called "Joint Investigative Mechanism" - “JIM” - in November of 2017, due to the unbalanced and unprofessional practices that marred the work of that mechanism as a result of the pressures on its team, from the governments of the United States, the United Kingdom and France with the aim of continuing to issue non-objective and biased reports against my country, Syria, and accusing it at any cost of the heinous crimes of using chemicals against civilians in Syria, as a means of defaming my government and to justify hostile acts against it.
Just to revive your memory, I remind this Council that one of the JIM reports which accused Syria of one of the incidents of using toxic chemicals, namely the "Khan Sheikhoun" incident, was based on narratives and evaluations in which technicians and experts of this mechanism used circumstantial and uncertain terms, such as "Probably - there is a belief - it may be - no conclusive evidence - Likely - Unlikely .. ", until the number of times those terms were used in that baseless report was thirty-two! This is in addition to the remote Hollywood investigations without visiting the crime scene, and the failure of the authors of the JIM reports to provide any proof or scientific evidence regarding the validity and integrity of the chain of custody of evidence that has been used in directing false accusations against the Syrian Arab Republic.
Let me here bring you back to that ominous day, when the former US Secretary of State Colin Powell came to this Council and repeated the same uncertain terms such as "high confidence" before his country's forces alongside British forces invaded Iraq in 2003. Needless to say, that his colleague John Kerry repeated the same misleading terms in front of you in this Council against my country regarding the Ghouta incident in August 2013. As if the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of the member states are subject to uncertain presumptive terms used by one Western or UN official, or another !!!
In all cases, the belief at that time and after the termination of the mandate of the "JIM, was that cutting the way to the unbalanced and unprofessional methods of work that "JIM", would contribute to returning the Secretariat and those responsible for this file to the right path. However, this unfortunate situation did not change. The Office of the High Representative for Disarmament Affairs at the UN and the OPCW Technical Secretariat remained captive to the desires, whims and delinquency of hostile governments, which are still living to this day in a state of hostile mania against my country.
Since the adoption of Resolution 2118 (2013), some members of this council continue to push for holding monthly sessions to this day, which have reached 84 formal sessions so far, with no goal or result other than seeking to blackmail the Syrian government and its allies with the so-called chemical file. For no other reason, but the fact that the American, British and French governments do not want to acknowledge the established truth since June 2014, when Mrs. Sigrid Kaag, head of the Joint Mission to Eliminate Chemical Weapons in Syria, came to this Council and presented her final report in which she confirmed that Syria has committed to and fulfilled all its commitments, and she confirmed the destruction of the entire chemical stockpile on board the American MV-Ray ship, which has been confirmed by OPCW. Allow me to remind you that the OPCW has verified that all 27 production facilities have been destroyed. Therefore, Syria has abided by its pledges and no longer possesses any chemical weapons. Which means, in clear and indisputable words that since 2014, Syria has not had any chemical program or chemical weapons. This is the only certainty that must be considered.
Mr. President, dear colleagues ...
We are shocked that the high-level officials of the United Nations, namely the Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, do not have the required level of independence and professionalism to distance themselves and their high and sensitive position from the politicizing the chemical file and holding it as a sword hanging over the neck of the Syrian Arab Republic and its allies. These UN officials regrettably, turned a blind eye to the miserable fact that some governments, first and foremost the governments of the United States and Britain, have destroyed Iraq, using the same deceptive methods.
We still believe that Ms. Nakamitsu should have dealt in a professional and positive manner with the documented and accurate information that we provide her with, regarding the possession and use of chemical weapons and materials by terrorist armed groups. Unfortunately, she did not evoke nor emulate the honorable historical experience of Mr. Scott Ritter, the United Nations inspector who worked in (UNSCOM) of Iraq, and Mr. Hans Blix, who headed the United Nations team to search for the alleged Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (UNMOVIC). These UN officials refused then to submit to the pressure and political blackmail practiced by US and UK governments in order to justify the military invasion of Iraq, declaring that there was no evidence of the existence of weapons of mass destruction in that brotherly country.
My Government has fulfilled its obligations arising from its accession to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), and Syria has always been keen to cooperate in a positive, professional and transparent manner with the Director-General of OPCW, the Organization's Technical Secretariat, the inspection team, the declaration assessment team, and the fact-finding mission to implement its obligations under the CWC. Moreover, Syria fulfilled its obligations despite the enormous challenges resulting from the consequences of the US and Turkish occupations of parts of my country, the provocative and hostile behavior of some regional and international parties, in addition to the imposition of unilateral coercive measures against the Syrian people and the Syrian state. However, Syria welcomes, Once again, the visit of the declaration assessment team to hold the 23rd round of consultations, which was postponed by the Technical Secretariat due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the aim of resolving all pending issues. This structured dialogue has led to significant progress; therefore, we look forward to permanently closing this file as the deliberation on the outstanding issues have been exhausted.
In this sense, my Government stresses its strong adherence to the principle of not conflicting the mandates and frameworks of the various international bodies. We also reject any attempt to involve the Security Council in purely technical issues that are addressed by the OPCW in the Hague. Based on these considerations, I reiterate the regret and concern of my Government about the legal and procedural violations and abuses that the OPCW committed when it violated the Convention and established the so-called "Investigation and Identification Team (IIT)" during a special session of the Conference of States Parties in June 2018.
It is worth mentioning that this notorious decision was not consensual as it was adopted by an artificial majority and in the absence of representatives of 87 member states.
Based on the principle of “fruit of the poisonous tree”, Syria asserts that the conclusions reached by the so-called "IIT" are not credible, have no legal basis, and are unrealistic. This is a categorically consistent assessment, and the member states of the organization and the Security Council know well that this team built its false accusations against Syria based on a report by the "FFM". Allow me to remind you here that the “FFM” did not make a field visit to "Al-Lataminah", and it conducted investigations remotely from the Turkish territories in the absence of technically and legally approved standards to ensure the integrity of the chain custody in the process of collecting and preserving physical evidence and samples. Furthermore, FFM relied on videos and fabricated photos that have been published on the Internet, witness testimonies and open sources provided by terrorist groups and their media aid, known as the terrorist group of the "White Helmets", and the fabricated information provided by the United States and some Western governments. The same governments are involved in supporting terrorist groups operating on the Syrian territories.
Unfortunately, same scenarios and wrong practices have been repeated in other incidents, such as the Khan Sheikhoun incident. In this regard, I will remind, those who have short memories, that the Syrian government initiated, before anybody else, the request of the former Secretary-General to establish a scientific and objective investigation team to investigate the use of "chemical weapon" in the town of Khan Al-Asal on March 19, 2013.
My country, Syria, rejects and does not recognize the recent decision of 9 July 202 adopted by the Executive Council of the OPCW, as it was based on the unprofessional fabricated report prepared by the so-called "Investigation and Identification Team", which does not contain any material evidence. Such a decision will enshrine a methodology within the organization that aims at further manipulating the provisions of the Convention along with the whims of some governments. Such an unprofessional behavior will reinforce the state of division within the Organization and give the green light for terrorist groups to conduct more fabricated chemical plots to accuse the Syrian Arab Army. This is a politicized decision that targets a member state of the Convention to achieve well-known political objectives and agendas. It will further politicize the organization’s work, weaken its role, and cause serious damage to its position and mandate.
My country, Syria, has always believed that the OPCW and its Technical Secretariat would and should distance themselves from becoming a tool for some influential Western governments to misuse. Unfortunately, realities on the ground have reflected negative examples and models in Syria. We will never lose sight of that fabricated report on the alleged incident in Douma 2018, whose original data by all the experts who participated in the field visit of the "Fact-Finding mission" to Douma were changed and modified in a manner that contradicts realities. That report portrayed the so-called Douma incident as the eighth miracle of the world, where we see a cylinder falling from the sky, colliding with the roofs of houses not exploding and it body is not deformed, then it lies on a bed in a small room in Douma without damaging it or breaking the glassware located at a distance not exceeding a meter from it ...! !!!
My Government is shocked at the attempts of the Technical Secretariat of the Organization to delay the issuance of the "Fact Finding Mission" report regarding the Aleppo incident on November 24, 2018, despite the fact that the Syrian and Russian sides have provided all available information, which confirms that terrorist armed groups used chemical weapons in that incident. Yet the fact-finding mission reluctance to issue this report prevails on the entire situation.
I would like to refer that Syria is still awaiting clear answers from “DAT” regarding the information provided by the Technical Secretariat of the organization on June 22, 2020, about the leakage of samples collected by the team during the 22nd round of consultations. Those samples were preserved in the organization's laboratory, that is supposed to be qualified and operate according to the highest international scientific standards.
In conclusion, we, in Syria, are realistic and we believe in the justice of our cause, and that this world is not a jungle where the law of force is imposed instead of the force of law. Therefore, we along with our friends will not allow new iron boxes to be closed in the Security Council for sixty years as had happened in Iraq case, so that, the world does not reveal the scandals that the United States and Britain committed. You all remember the infamous scandal when the US and UK fabricated the weapons of mass destruction file in Iraq to invade and destroy that brotherly country. Then, they marched with some hypocrites in the funeral of international law and the UN Charter to their final resting place in the martyr’s cemetery in Baghdad beside the bodies of millions of Iraqi innocent people.
Finally, Mr. President,
In response to what my colleague, the representative of the US, I would like to share with you the following: John Rabion, a US special envoy was recently in Turkey, where he had met with the Turkish intelligence officers and the terrorists of the “White Helmets” and provided them with “very important and highly secretive instructions” for the intention of using chemical weapons in a densely populated area in Idleb governorate. The attack will be supervised by both the Turkish intelligence and their tool “Haiat Tahrir Al-Sham” ,where the toxic chemical materials will be transported via food and aid shipments. Furthermore, in order to protect their proxy terrorists, 2000 protective masks of chemical and poisonous gases in addition to 3000 anti-dot injection were distributed among terrorists operating in Jabal Al-Zawya area.
My delegation strongly objects to the participation of the representative of the terrorism- sponsoring Turkish regime in this meeting. We remind members of this Council that terrorist groups would not have been able to conduct many of their heinous crimes, including those using chemical weapons, without the support of Erdogan regime. Such support was confirmed in the Turkish media as “Yort” newspaper, in 2012, published about terrorists fabricating toxic gases in a laboratory located in the Turkish city of Gaziantep , then media talked on several reports on smuggling Sarin gas from Libya through Turkish territories and delivering it to terrorist groups via the terrorist “Haitham Kassab”. Add to this, a myriad of crimes that are quite hard to numerate.