For a third time, UN report shows Assad used chemical weapons

  • 23/10/2016
Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks during an interview with Russian tabloid Komsomolskaya Pravda (Reuters)
Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks during an interview with Russian tabloid Komsomolskaya Pravda (Reuters)

A report prepared for the UN Security Council has accused Syria of using chemical weapons for the third time.

The leaked report says President Bashar al-Assad dropped barrel bombs with chlorine gas on Idlib last year.

UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said it was "horrific" and "cruel barbarity". Protesters outside Downing St have called on the UK government to do more to stop the Syrian and Russian bombing, saying too many children have been killed and orphaned.

There has been no pause in fighting from anti-Assad forces refusing to give up their ground. Eastern Aleppo has seen some of worst violence of the war. But today focus turns to the city of Idlib.

In March last year up to 70 were brought to a hospital following a poisonous chlorine attack that left them struggling to breathe. The gas kills by burning your lungs.

A new independent report to the UN has confirmed that Syrian government forces are responsible. It's the third time they've been found guilty, despite Mr Assad signing up to the convention that bans chlorine chemical weapons and pledging to destroy them in 2013.

Chemical weapons and cluster bombs have been a big feature of Syria's war. The charity Save the Children has found that in eight months the number of attacks by cluster bombs has increased by eight fold, with children paying the highest price.

More than 130 children have been recorded dead in Aleppo over the past month, each life remembered by a teddy outside Downing St as part of a protest. Protesters want UK Prime Minister Theresa May to do more.

But if it's the Russians who are behind the airstrikes, are they directing their calls at the right world leader?

So far Syrians have been failed by global diplomacy, which appears to be breaking down.

Today the UK Foreign Office condemned Mr Assad and Russia.

The Russians say they want to liberate Syria. But humanitarians ask why this is at the expense of Syria's children.

Channel 4