Ali Haidar, the Minister of State for National Reconciliation Affairs in Syria, slammed the White House for claiming that Washington had identified potential preparations for a chemical attack by Syrian government forces.

Damascus has never used and will never use such weapons, Haidar said, adding that the statement issued by the White House portends a “diplomatic battle” against Syria in the UN.

On April 4, the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces supported by the United States blamed the Syrian government for an alleged chemical weapon attack in Khan Sheikhoun in Syria’s Idlib province. Reacting to the incident, Washington, which had not presented any proof of the chemical weapons use by Damascus, launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Syrian governmental military airfield in Ash Sha’irat on April 6.

Damascus has repeatedly denied any involvement in the incident and said that the Syrian government doesn’t possess chemical weapons as the full destruction of Damascus’ chemical weapons stockpile had been confirmed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in January 2016.

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