In an exclusive interview with Kathimerini, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad denied that the Syrian Army used chemical weapons against civilians, while taking aim at both Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US President Donald Trump.
Saying that Syria gave up its chemical arsenal in 2013, Assad said the
“Western narrative started after the victory of the Syrian Army, not before.”
He accused Erdogan of being “affiliated” with the Muslim Brotherhood Islamist movement and called Turkish troops “terrorists” over their intervention in Afrin.
As for Trump, who has called Assad an “animal,” the Syrian leader said it did not bother him “because I deal with the situation as a politician, as a president.”
Alexis Papachelas: There have been accusations from the US and the Europeans about the use of chemical weapons, and there was an attack after that. What is your response to that? Was there a chemical attack? Were you responsible for it?
President Bashar al-Assad: First of all, we don’t have a chemical arsenal since we gave it up in 2013, and the international agency for chemical weapons conducted investigations about this, and it’s clear or documented that we don’t have any. Second, even if we did have, we wouldn’t use them, for many different reasons. But let’s put these two points aside, let’s presume that this army has chemical weapons and it’s in the middle of the war; where should it be used? At the end of the battle? They should use it somewhere in the middle, or where the terrorists made an advancement, not where the army finished the battle and the terrorists gave up and said, “We are ready to leave the area,” and the army is fully in control of that area. So the Western narrative started after the victory of the Syrian Army, not before. When we finished the war, they said, “They used chemical weapons.”
Second, the use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in a crammed area with a population like Douma – the supposed area, it’s called Douma and they talk about 45 victims – when you use WMD in such an area, you should have hundreds or maybe thousands of victims. Third, why do all the chemical weapons – the presumed or supposed chemical weapons – only kill children and women?