Syria – Report by the organization for the prohibition of chemical weapons on the use of chemical weapons in Marea (24 February 2024)


France welcomes the publication of the fourth report issued by the Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). The report follows those published in April 2020, April 2021 and January 2023 which concluded that the Syrian regime was responsible in chemical attacks in the Syrian towns of Latamneh in 2017, and Saraqib and Duma in 2018.

This new OPCW report, resulting from independent, impartial and rigorous work, for the first time deems Daesh (ISIS) responsible in a chemical-weapon attack perpetrated in the town of Marea, north-west Syria, on 1 September 2015, which wounded 11. In its report the IIT concludes that it has reasonable grounds to believe that Daesh units deployed sulfur mustard, using one or more artillery guns during their attack on the town of Marea. The IIT bases its conclusions on the study of 20,492 files and 29 witness statements, and it considered data relating to 30 samples taken from the area.

The documented, irrefutable use of these weapons by Daesh is unacceptable. France reiterates its strongest condemnation of any use of chemical weapons anywhere, at any time, by anyone, under any circumstances.

We reaffirm our commitment to holding to account the perpetrators of all chemical weapons attacks in Syria and beyond. France remains fully mobilized to ensure that an appropriate response is made to these actions. It commends and fully supports the OPCW’s efforts to respond to the challenge posed by chemical terrorism. France reaffirms its determination for the perpetrators of chemical attacks to be punished. To this end, among other things, it launched the International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons in Paris in 2018, which today brings together 40 States and the European Union.