AMSTERDAM — Syria on Wednesday missed a deadline to hand over all the toxic materials it declared to the world’s chemical weapons watchdog, putting the program several weeks behind schedule and jeopardizing a final June 30 deadline.
At the same time, opposition activists say the Syrian air force is attacking the country’s biggest city, Aleppo, with barrel bombs, forcing many to flee. Turkey was turning away some of those refugees because camps were now full
Under a deal reached in October between Russia and the United States, which helped avert a U.S.-led missile strike against the government of President Bashar al-Assad, Syria agreed to give up its entire stockpile of chemical weapons by February 5.
Russia said Tuesday its ally Damascus would ship more chemicals soon, but Western diplomats said they saw no indications that further shipments were pending.
Syria has said it would submit a handover timetable to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which won the Nobel Peace Prize last year, but gave no indication of when that would happen.
OPCW spokesman Michael Luhan:
“It’s a status quo until we get this plan.”
Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Meqdad:
“Syria is proceeding with all determination, strength and credibility to fully implement the agreements with the U.N.-OPCW.”