The UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria noted that it was strongly concerned about the impact of US-led coalition airstrikes on civilians in Islamic State-held areas. During this period, warring parties continued to lay sieges and to instrumentalise humanitarian aid to compel surrender. While it's true that chlorine has multiple industrial uses, the same can not be said of Sarin gas used in several attacks over the last few years.
The report also documented several incidents perpetrated by the terrorist groups Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham (formerly al-Nusra) and ISIL, and by armed group fighters.
The Syrian government has denied the team access to the territory it controls.
The attack killed at least 83 people, dozens of them women and children.
GENEVA - U.N. -mandated investigators said Wednesday that Syrian President Bashar Assad's air force conducted a sarin gas attack in the spring that killed at least 83 civilians and sparked a retaliatory US strike.
Government forces have used chemical weapons more than two dozen times during the ongoing war in Syria, including in April's deadly attack on Khan Sheikhoun, UN war crimes investigators said Wednesday. The aerial campaign also targeted medical facilities throughout the area, resulting in a severe weakening of their ability to provide assistance to victims of the sarin attack and a consequent increase in the number of civilian casualties. In Idlib, Hamah, and eastern Ghouta, Damascus, Syrian forces used weaponized chlorine.
Despite an internationally backed effort to remove the Syrian government's chemical weapons stockpiles, USA intelligence officials believe that it retains a significant quantity that could still be used for attacks on civilians. The report stated it was not able to identify perpetrators of the six other attacks.
The latest report by the Commission of Inquiry on Syria also said United States forces failed to take "all feasible precautions" to protect civilians in attacking alleged terrorists in Aleppo in March, destroying part of a mosque complex.
Investigations are ongoing into allegations that worldwide coalition airstrikes, carried out as part of the ongoing offensive to repel ISIL from Raqqa, have resulted in increasingly alarming numbers of civilian casualties.
The report also highlighted civilian deaths caused by USA coalition strikes in its fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State (ISIS), including the series of strikes on a prayer hall next to a mosque in Aleppo, which resulted in dozens of civilian deaths, including children, on March 16.