U.N. team in Syria wants to probe gas attack claim

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email
The chief of a U.N. inspectors

Waving hand Syrian flags

BEIRUT (AP) -- The chief of a U.N. inspectors' team visiting Syria says he wants to look into claims from this morning of an alleged chemical weapons attack near Damascus.

Swedish chemical weapons expert Ake Sellstrom says the high numbers of killed and wounded being reported "sound suspicious."

He told Swedish broadcaster SVT that this "sounds like something we need to look into."

Sellstrom, who is heading the U.N. team, says a formal request from a member state would have to came through the U.N. channels and Syria would need to agree.

Syrian opposition groups claimed at least 100 people died Wednesday in a government offensive near Damascus, attacks in which some activists say regime troops used "poisonous gas."

The government denied reports its troops used chemical weapons, dismissing the claims as baseless.

The U.S. is also deeply concerned by the chemical weapons report, and the White House has issued a request for the U.N.to investigate the incident.

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