Syrian army seizes Sarin gas from rebels

By IANS/RIA Novosti,

Moscow: The Syrian army has seized two cylinders of nerve agent Sarin in an operation in Hama city, Press TV reported.

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The containers were found in militant hideouts in al-Faraieh area, which has been the scene of fighting between troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition armed groups, the TV channel said.

Sarin is a colourless, odourless liquid gas which causes respiratory arrest and death.

The poisonous agent has been classified as a weapon of mass destruction in UN Resolution 687, Press TV said.

A leading UN official on Syria said in May on a Swiss-Italian TV network that the UN commission investigating alleged human rights abuses in Syria has heard testimony that the rebels have used chemical weapons.

“According to the testimonies that we have collected, the rebels have used chemical weapons, by using sarin gas,” Carla Del Ponte of the UN commission investigating reported human rights abuses in Syria told Radiotelevisione Svizzera.

According to defence publisher Jane’s, Syria held large stocks of chemical and biological weapons before the current conflict broke out including mustard gas, phosgene, and sarin and VX nerve agents.

The two-year old civil war in Syria has killed at least 80,000 people according to figures from the UN.