Syria crisis: Russia will give UN evidence, says Lavrov

Russia will give the Security Council evidence implicating Syrian rebels in a chemical attack on 21 August, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said.
Syrian officials supplied the evidence, which Mr Lavrov has not yet seen.
UN report released on Monday concluded the nerve agent sarin was used in the attack in Damascus, in which hundreds were killed.
The US blamed government forces for the attack, but Russia and Damascus have insisted that rebels were responsible.
The UN report did not apportion blame for the attack, which sparked diplomacy that culminated in a deal for Syria to hand over its chemical arsenal by mid-2014.
The report's author, Ake Sellstrom, told the BBC he believed that the task of finding and destroying Syria's chemical stockpile would be "stressful work", but was "doable".


The war of words over the use of chemical weapons in Syria - much of it aimed at saving face - was predictable.
But the fact is that Russia persuaded Syria to declare its weapons and let them be destroyed. What counts now is what actually happens, not what people say.
The first agreed deadline comes on Saturday, by which time Damascus is supposed to provide an inventory of its chemical arsenal. If that slides, doubts about its sincerity - and Moscow's credibility - will start to grow.
Before and since the Kerry-Lavrov agreement, Syria and Russia argued publicly that the rebels had used chemical weapons, either in the 21 August attack or elsewhere. But that did not prevent Syria agreeing to disarm at Moscow's behest.
He said much depended on whether the Syrian government and the opposition were willing to negotiate.
The disarmament deal was brokered by the US and Russia.
The penalty for any possible breaches by Syria are now being thrashed out by the UN Security Council permanent members.
Selective and incomplete
Mr Lavrov said there was plenty of evidence that pointed to rebel involvement in chemical attacks similar to the Damascus attack.
"We will have to find out who did it," he said.
Earlier Mr Lavrov's deputy, Sergei Ryabkov, said he had been given the evidence during a trip to Syria.
He said it needed to be analysed, and gave no details of its content.
Mr Ryabkov criticised the UN report, saying it was "distorted" and "one-sided".
"The basis of information upon which it is built is not sufficient, and in any case we would need to learn and know more on what happened beyond and above that incident of 21 August," he said.
"We are disappointed, to put it mildly, about the approach taken by the UN secretariat and the UN inspectors, who prepared the report selectively and incompletely."

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The Russians and the Syrians are fighting on multiple fronts at the moment in the PR war”
In response to Mr Ryabkov's comments, Mr Sellstrom told the BBC he thought Russia was not criticising the report itself but the process, which he described a political matter and therefore not his remit
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius defended the UN report, saying he was surprised by the Russian reaction.
"Nobody can question the objectivity of the people appointed by the UN," he said.
Human Rights Watch has taken the trajectory of the rockets from the UN document and plotted their likely path.
The rights group said the likely launch site for the missiles was in a government military compound.
Estimated range and trajectories of rockets in 21 August chemical attack
The UN inspectors were originally mandated to go to Syria to investigate three alleged chemical weapons attacks, at Khan al-Assal, Sheikh Maqsoud and Saraqeb.
But they were later ordered to shift their focus to the Damascus incident, which was the most deadly chemical assault.
They are due to return to Syria "within weeks" to complete their inquiry into the other attacks, and a report is due in October.
UN divided
On Tuesday the five permanent UN Security Council members met in New York to discuss a draft resolution put forward by the UK, France and the US.
They want a resolution containing the threat of military action against Syria if it fails to comply with the disarmament deal, but Russia opposes this.
A resolution under Chapter VII of the UN charter permits military action if other measures do not succeed. Chapter VI requires a purely negotiated solution.
The BBC's Daniel Sandford in Moscow says Russia has delivered a promise from Syria to give up its chemical weapons, and it seems that at this stage Moscow does not feel like giving the Western allies anything more.
Russia and China have three times blocked Western-backed Security Council resolutions against Mr Assad.
More than 100,000 people have died since the uprising against President Assad began in 2011.
Millions of Syrians have fled the country and millions more have been internally displaced.

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