#AceNewsReports – Feb.09: In a story that dates back to 2016 as reported by The Diplomat and published by Reuters that confirmed the use of mustard gas on Tuesday it was confirmed that tests have confirmed that the Islamic State group was making rudimentary chemical weapons at the University of Mosul, the Pentagon said ..
This from The Business Standard on Wednesday confirms further details of the story behind manufacturer of these chemical weapons …
Coalition-backed Iraqi forces in mid-January took control of the sprawling campus of the university, which IS had used as a headquarters during its two-and-a-half-year rule of the city.
Among the many booby-trapped buildings, Iraqi forces found chemicals inside the university, which was heavily damaged in the fighting.
The Iraqis have now run tests on the chemicals and these proved positive for sulphur mustard, Pentagon spokesman Navy Captain Jeff Davis said.
Mosul university was “central to the ISIS chemical weapons program,” Davis said, using an IS acronym.
“They have received positive samples; that is indeed what was going on there.”
Davis said he was not aware of anyone having been #killed by the chemicals.
“It was used primarily as an irritant and something to scare people,” he said.
Previously a source at the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirmed that laboratory tests had come back positive for sulphur mustard, after around 35 Kurdish troops were sickened on the battlefield last August.
The OPCW will not identify who used the chemical agent. But the diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity because the findings have not yet been released, said the result confirmed that chemical weapons had been used by Islamic State fighters.
The samples were taken after the soldiers became ill during fighting against Islamic State militants southwest of Erbil, capital of Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region.
The OPCW already concluded in October that mustard gas was used last year in neighbouring Syria. Islamic State has declared a “caliphate” in territory it controls in both Iraq and Syria and does not recognise the frontier.
The matter is expected to be raised at the next meeting of the OPCW’s 41-member Executive Council in a month, an official said.
Iraqi forces began the offensive to retake Mosul in October and have made major advances, though it has been a brutal fight with high casualties.
Most of the east side of the city is in Iraqi hands, though countless booby traps and small IS cells remain.
Meanwhile, the jihadists still control the west of the city.
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