Iraqi forces find chemical warfare agent in Mosul
Mosul: Iraqi forces discovered a mustard chemical warfare agent in eastern Mosul alongside a cache of Russian surface-to-surface missiles, an Iraqi officer said on Saturday.
Iraqi and US officials have repeatedly warned of Islamic State group efforts to develop chemical weapons. When Iraqi forces retook Mosul University earlier this month, they found chemistry labs they believed had been converted into makeshift chemical weapons labs.
Iraqi special forces Brig. Gen. Haider Fadhil said French officials tested the Mosul chemical this week and confirmed it was a mustard agent. Fadhil did not specify the quantity or potency of the chemical, but Iraqi soldiers were able to visit the site for about ten minutes without exhibiting any symptoms of exposure.
“We know they were using this place to experiment with chemical weapons,” he said, referring to ISIS. He believes the facility was set up in the Nineveh ruins but removed from the city’s dense neighborhoods to keep it a secret from Mosul residents.