Islamic State group used chemical weapons, say UN experts

United Nations experts have uncovered evidence of the use of chemical weapons by the Islamic State jihadist group during the era of its self-declared “caliphate”, according to a report which was to be debated on Monday (December 5th) by the Security Council. security.

Members of Unitad, the investigative team tasked with helping to bring ISIS to account for its crimes, claim to have collected “testimonial, digital and documentary evidence” relating in particular to the use of chemical weapons in Iraq under the Caliphate (2014-2019). Experts conclude that IS “manufactured and produced chemical rockets and mortars, chemical rocket launcher munitions, chemical missile warheads and improvised explosive devices”.

The investigation focused on “to the financing, supply and logistics of (ISIS) and its links with command elements, to better understand what were the alleged sites of manufacture, production and use of weapons in Iraq, to obtain additional information on the agents produced (…) and the vectors used”.

Serious medical complications for the victims

The experts have particularly focused on an attack perpetrated against Taza Khormatu on March 8, 2016. They claim to have collected “a significant amount of evidence”, notably “payroll statements and items of correspondence” of the jihadist group.

The team “examined evidence of compensation to families for the ‘martyrdom’ of their members killed while handling chemical weapons…and records of training provided…to high-ranking officers on the use of chemical substances as weapons, in particular chemical dispersal devices”.

Among the products used were “aluminum phosphide, chlorine, Clostridium botulinum bacteria, cyanide, nicotine, ricin, and thallium sulfate”. The report highlights “the medical complications currently suffered by residents of Taza Khormatu (chronic diseases, cancers and reproductive disorders, in particular)”.

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