UNITED NATIONS, April 5 (KUNA) -- The UN is continuing its discussions with
the Syrian government on its request to dispatch an investigation team to
probe the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria, and is hopeful to reach a
decision soon, Deputy Spokesman Eduardo del Buey told the daily press briefing.
"The UN continues to discuss the content of the exchange of letters with
the government of Syria, and it is hopeful that a mutual understanding on the
text will be reached soon," he said in answer to questions.
The two sides are discussing how much access the UN team will have to sites
and victims once it is on the ground.
These issues are being discussed orally and in writing by Syrian Ambassador
to the UN Bashar Ja'afari and Angela Kane, the head of the UN Disarmament
Affairs, who met twice.
KUNA learned that Syria does not want the team, headed by Swedish scientist
Ake Sellstrom, to interrogate the victims of such attacks, and wants to limit
the probe to only Khan Al Asal site near Aleppo.
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who ordered the probe last month, said that
while the primary focus of the investigation would be Khan Al-Assal incident,
as requested by both parties, he will also consider investigating two
additionial sites - Al-Tayba near Damascus and Homs - as requested by the
opposition and western countries.
The Government and the opposition traded accusations last month of using
the prohibited weapons on civilians.
In a related matter, KUNA learned that UN-Arab League Joint Special Envoy
for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi is keeping a low profile, upset by the fact that the
Arab League decided in its Summit last week to grant Syria's seat to the
opposition, a decision that runs contrary to the UN position which considers
the Assad regime as the only representative of the Syrian people. (end)
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