Doctors and witnesses say victims of the attack in Syria showed symptoms of poisoning, possibly by a nerve agent, and reported the smell of chlorine gas, but Syria and Russia have strongly denied any kind of chemical attack occurred, and it is doubtful any evidence can prove otherwise, The Washington Post reports.
"In the current situation," an investigation "is too hard," said Mohamad Katoub of the Syrian American Medical Society. Katoub also added local staffers were afraid to give testimony.
At least 60 people were killed and more than 1,000 injured last Saturday when the Assad regime reportedly launched a chemical attack in Douma. Victims were foaming from the mouth and nose, some were twitching, others had abnormal pupils, and they emitted a powerful smell of chlorine, according to medical workers on the scene.
"We believe the gas used was chlorine and another kind of gas," said Mohammed Marhoum, a medical worker.
Alastair W.M. Hay, a professor of toxicology at Leeds University in England, told the Post the look of the bodies "is pretty much consistent with a nerve-agent-type exposure."
"That's suggestive of something that was very toxic, and people have pretty much died where they were when they inhaled the agent. They've just dropped dead."
International chemical weapons experts are expected to visit Douma to investigate the attack, but Russia and Assad's government have said there was no evidence a gas attack had taken place.
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