Scores feared dead in Syria 'chemical attack' as US demands international response after 'horrifying' reports

“We firmly deny this information,” said General Yuri Yevtushenko, head of the Russian Centre for Reconciliation of the Warring Sides in Syria, in comments reported by news agencies.

“We are ready, once Douma is freed from militants, to immediately send Russian specialists in radiation, chemical and biological defence to collect data that will confirm these claims are fabricated,” he added.

One analyst likened the emerging atrocity to the use of mustard gas by the Italian fascists in Ethiopia in the 1930s. 

“Just as Syria has uncanny echoes of the Spanish Civil War, so the Syrian regime’s repeated use of poison gas recalls another dark episode from the Thirties, when Fascist Italy used chemical weapons against defenceless Ethiopians,” Dr Euan Graham, Director of the International Security Program at the Lowy Institute, told the Telegraph.

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