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Russia questions claims on Syria toxic gas attack

August 21, 2013

MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian Foreign Ministry says the accusations that the Syrian government carried out a toxic gas attack seem aimed at undermining efforts to convene an international peace conference.

Syrian anti-government activists blame President Bashar Assad’s regime for the attack that killed at least 100 people.

But Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich issued a statement Wednesday saying that the accusations appear to be an effort to “create a pretext at any cost for demanding that the U.N. Security Council stand on the side of the opponents of the regime, and in this way undermine the chances of convening the Geneva conference.”

He says Russia’s information indicated that the rocket had been launched from positions in a Damascus suburb occupied by opposition forces. He calls for an “objective and professional” investigation.

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