RT reported on Thursday, 30 August, that Russian officials briefed US diplomats on a plan by militants is Syria to stage a false flag attack using chemical weapons in Idlib to frame Damascus.
Anatoly Antonov, the Russian ambassador in Washington, confirmed to the media on Wednesday that he had met with the US special representative to Syria, James Jeffrey, and David M. Satterfield, acting assistant secretary of state for near eastern affairs.
The attendees of the rare meeting and the fact that it had taken place earlier this week
[were] revealed by US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert during a daily briefing.
The meeting was called by Russia on Friday and held on Monday, August 27, Antonov said. He commended the US side for coming at such short notice, and described the meeting as “constructive and professional.”
At the meeting, Russia officially conveyed its concerns over reports that Washington together with France and the UK is gearing up for another set of airstrikes in Syria under the pretext of a chemical attack, that would immediately be blamed on the Syrian government. Moscow […] asked Washington to “provide the facts without delay” to substantiate the new allegations that Damascus uses chemical weapons against its own people.
Such rhetoric fanned by Washington may prompt militants and their “pseudo-humanitarian” organizations like the White Helmets to mount another provocation using chemical agents, Antonov warned.
Intelligence that Russia has gathered has been shared with the US, and the diplomats were told “in detail” about the provocation against civilians being prepared by Al-Nusra Front (now known as Tahrir al-Sham) in the northwestern province of Idlib.
The Russian Defense Ministry reported earlier that Tahrir al-Sham was plotting a chemical attack that would then be misrepresented as another “atrocity” by the “Syrian regime.” Eight canisters of chlorine have been delivered to a village near Jisr al-Shughur city, and a specially trained group of militants, prepped by the British security company Olive, also arrived in the area to imitate a rescue operation to save the civilian “victims.” Militants plan to use child hostages in the staged incident, according to Antonov.
Moscow cautioned Washington against falling for this provocation, noting that a massive airstrike targeting Syria’s military and civilian infrastructure will constitute another act of “groundless and illegal aggression” against Syria.
“A new escalation in Syria does not correspond to interests of any party. We believe that our concern will be heard,” Antonov said, adding that he hopes the US “will take every effort to prevent terrorists from using toxic chemicals and will be acting responsibly, in accordance with the status of the UN Security Council permanent member.”
President Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton stated last week that the US “will respond very strongly” in case of a chemical attack by Damascus. The warning was interpreted by the Russian Defense Ministry as a veiled confirmation that the US has been considering an airstrike on Syria similar to the one it carried out in April, alongside France and the UK.
The war in Syria is all but over. President Bashar al-Assad’s government once again has control over almost all of Syria’s sovereign territory, and with a final battle looming between his forces and the antigovernment forces and al-Qaeda forces operating in Idlib there is just one problem: The American pressure to remove al-Assad by any means necessary, including prolonging the war, and including the semi-clandestine support of the al-Qaeda operative, Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham.
The objectivity of news reporting about this war is rife with propaganda, mostly from the US and Western allies side. This is probably rather sensible, since the American forces operating in the area have no legal right to be there. In order to appear legitimate at home, the narrative must make it look like the US forces need to be there. President Trump came close to ending it in April, but just in the nick of time, an alleged gas attack took place, prompting the US, France and Great Britain to launch a visually impressive missile strike that thankfully only destroyed a few empty buildings.
The actuality of a gas attack in April still has yet to be verified, because the OPCW authorities cannot get to the site due to it’s being controlled by al-Qaeda forces.
With tensions rising over the possibility of the false-flag attack being repeated, US forces are on alert.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.