Last updated: 25 August, 2013

France says no doubt Damascus behind suspected chemical attack

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Sunday there was “no doubt” the Damascus regime was behind a suspected chemical weapons attack near the capital last week.

“The indications are totally convergent on the scale of the massacre and the overwhelming responsibility of the regime… As far as we are concerned, there is no doubt concerning the substance of the facts and their origin,” Fabius told a Jerusalem press conference.

Asked about the Syrian regime’s decision on Sunday to grant UN inspectors permission to inspect the sites of the suspected chemical strikes, Fabius replied that “this request was already made several days ago”.

“The site has been bombed since,” he said.

“We will see what the actual work that will be done is,” he added.

UN inspectors in Syria are due to launch their probe into allegations of chemical weapon use on the outskirts of Damascus on Monday.

“From the moment the substance of the facts is established incontestably, there will necessarily be a strong response,” Fabius added.

The press conference came at the end of a two-day visit by Fabius to Israel and the Palestinian territories to support the peace process and to discuss events in the region.