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Moscow Accuses 2 Int’l Agencies of ‘Settling Scores’ with Damascus

Moscow Accuses 2 Int’l Agencies of ‘Settling Scores’ with Damascus

Friday, 5 March, 2021 - 10:00
Soldiers walk past damaged buildings in Yarmouk Palestinian camp in Damascus, Syria May 22, 2018 (REUTERS/Omar Sanadiki)

Russian diplomats have accused the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) of having turned into a “tool to achieve the geopolitical interests of Western parties” by “politicizing” their activities to continue exerting pressure on Damascus.

During a regular meeting of the IAEA Board of Governors, Russia said that the agency should not “exploit” its operations “to settle accounts with Syria,” stressing the need to focus efforts on solving “real issues related to the non-proliferation regime.”

According to Russian diplomats, “member states should abandon politicized attempts to exploit the inspections of the International Atomic Energy Agency in order to settle scores with Damascus. Instead, it is necessary to focus joint efforts on finding solutions to the real issues of the non-proliferation regime and ways to strengthen the safeguards system.”

This position coincided with another attack by the Russian Deputy Representative to the United Nations, Dmitry Polyanskiy, against the OPCW.

“Every day we see more and more evidence that the US and its Euro-Atlantic allies seek to turn the OPCW into a tool for promoting their geopolitical interests,” Polyanskiy said during a session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

He added that such positions by Western countries were particularly clear during the investigations into the use of chemical weapons in Syria, when Damascus was held responsible in the absence of sufficient evidence.

On Wednesday, the UNGA discussed a draft resolution on cooperation with the OPCW in the ongoing investigations into the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria. Russia described the document as “very unbalanced and politicized.”

Immediately before that, Russia had directed sharp criticism at the policies of the OPCW’s technical secretariat on Syria, accusing it of “bias and politicization.”

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