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Diplomat: Syria says rebels target chemical depots

By The Associated Press

This article was published January 9, 2014 at 8:07 a.m.

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — A Western diplomat said Syria's representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has said insurgents have twice launched unsuccessful attacks on Syrian depots where chemicals used in poison gas and nerve agents are being stored.

The diplomat said Thursday that Syria's ambassador to the organization reported the purported attempted attacks Wednesday at a private meeting of the group's executive council. The diplomat, who was at the meeting, spoke on condition of anonymity because it was closed to media.

The Syrian representative who spoke was not available to comment, and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons itself declined comment because the remarks were made at a private meeting. The New York Times first reported the Syrian comments.

According to the diplomat who spoke to The Associated Press, Syria claims that the insurgent attacks on storage sites near the city of Homs and in a Damascus suburb were repelled. It was not clear when the alleged attacks happened, and the report could not be independently verified.

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