Russia: Britain Staged Syrian Chemical Attack
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says whole thing was set up as part of 'Russophobic campaign'
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 13, 2018 1:14 PM CDT
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is seen in Moscow on Friday.   (AP Photo/Sergei Poliakov)

(Newser) – As the world watches to see what US President Trump will do in the wake of a suspected chemical attack widely believed to have been carried out by the Syrian government against its own people, there's another theory floating around courtesy of Russia. The BBC reports that, according to Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, there's "irrefutable evidence" that what actually happened was a staged effort as part of a "Russophobic campaign," with one country at its helm. And although Lavrov didn't mention what country that was at a Friday presser, a rep for Russia's defense ministry did. "We have … evidence that proves Britain was directly involved in organizing this provocation," said Gen. Igor Konashenkov, though the AP notes he didn't offer up any of that evidence while speaking.

What Konashenkov did present were statements he said came from medics at Douma's hospital after the alleged April 7 attack, with the medics purportedly saying people with video cameras came in with patients who claimed to have been poisoned, but who didn't show any signs of chemical poisoning. Britain's response: "This is grotesque," per Karen Pierce, the country's ambassador to the UN, after hearing the Russian remarks. "It's some of the worst piece of fake news we've yet seen from the Russia propaganda machine," she added, calling it a "bizarre" and "blatant lie," per ABC News. Meanwhile, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley told a UN Security Council meeting Friday Syria has used chemical weapons at least 50 times since its civil war began in 2011—a number far higher than what had been publicly confirmed, per the New York Times.

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