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Russia Delivers Chemical Disarmament Gear to Syria

Russia Delivers Chemical Disarmament Gear to Syria

(Dp-news- RIA Novosti )

Russia has handed over vehicles and supplies to assist Syria with destruction of its chemical weapons stockpile, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Monday.

“Russia airlifted 75 vehicles, including 50 Kamaz trucks and 25 Ural armored vehicles to the airport in Latakia on December 18-20,” Shoigu said at a meeting with President Vladimir Putin.

Shoigu said other supplies, including water tanks, field kitchens and tents for personnel involved in transportation and destruction of Syrian chemical stocks, were also delivered during the same period.

The equipment will help experts from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to safely transport the Syrian chemical stockpile to the port of Latakia to be later transferred to a US Navy ship for destruction, he said.

Russia is among several nations assisting the chemical disarmament effort in Syria.

The process was launched by a Russian-US joint initiative following an August 21 chemical weapons attack on a Damascus suburb that allegedly killed hundreds of civilians. The US and

Western allies accused the Syrian government of responsibility for the attack, but Damascus blamed rebel groups.

The operation to destroy Syria’s arsenal of more than 1,000 metric tons of weapons-grade chemicals is due to take place in two stages. The most dangerous weapons have to be removed from Syria by the end of December and destroyed at sea by April, the rest is slated for destruction by mid-2014.

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