A woman affected by what activists say was a gas attack on the town of Telminnes breathes through an oxygen mask at Bab al-Hawa hospital, where she was transferred to, close to the Turkish border April 21, 2014. REUTERS/Amer Alfaj
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Syria on Monday handed over to Western governments the last of the chemical weapons stockpile that it has acknowledged having, although doubts remain about whether all toxic weapons have truly been removed from the increasingly unstable region.The milestone comes amid tense days across the Middle East, as Israel carried out strikes Monday on Syria in response to a Syrian attack in the Golan Heights a day earlier, and a Syrian cabinet member warned that Sunni insurgents in neighboring Iraq have been transferring weapons and equipment to rebel allies in Syria. Ahmet Uzumcu, the director general of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, confirmed Monday that the final 8 percent of Syria's 1,300-ton stockpile -- which included mustard gas and raw materials for making sarin nerve gas -- has been loaded onto a Danish ship in the Syrian port of Latakia before it is destroyed.He acknowledged that Syria could still be hiding some of its arsenal.Louay Safi, a senior member of the rebel Western-backed Syrian National Coalition, said he was skeptical whether Syria has declared all of its chemical weapons.
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