Aluminum Phosphide discovered at East Aleppo rebel weapon factory: Chemical Weapon use implicated

Lizzie Phelan with Russia Today has posted a video of a building captured from rebels in Hanano in East Aleppo. The video appears to show a former school that was turned into a weapon manufacturing facility by rebel fighters. For example, we see many blue gas canisters of the type used by rebels in their “Hell Cannon” weapons.

Inside the building there are plastic barrels full of bags of Detia Gas-Ex-B. Detia Gas-Ex-B is used in agriculture to kill pests. Its active ingredient is aluminum phosphide. Aluminum phosphide reacts with moisture or acid to create phosphine gas. Phosphine gas is lethal and can serve as a chemical weapon in war. In fact, ISIS attacked Kurdish forces with artillery shells containing phosphine gas.   I have requested information about these shells but have not received a response yet.

Aluminum phosphide has also killed many people both intentionally and unintentionally worldwide. Aluminum phosphide has legitimate use as a pesticide.  However, the development of pesticides and chemical warfare agents has gone “hand-in-hand”. For example, Tabun, a pesticide developed in Germany in 1936, was used by Iraq against Iran in the Iraq-Iran war. The precursor for VX was also a pesticide.

The discovery of aluminum phosphide in a rebel weapon production facility is incriminating evidence of the attempted use by rebels of phosphine gas as a chemical warfare agent. The presence of a large quantity of aluminum phosphide along with rebel gas canisters strongly suggests that rebels were filling the gas canisters with phosphine gas before launching them in “Hell Cannon”. Gas tanks launched by Hell Cannons would be a simple delivery system for a phosphine gas chemical attack.

In April 2016, Terrogence reported that jihadi websites were posting instructions about how to produce phosphine gas for use in IEDs and VBIEDs.  The American College of Toxicology in 2008 listed phosphine gas created from phosphide pellets (as found at the rebel facility) as a chemical agent of opportunity for terrorists.  Phosphine is classified by the United States Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a Warfare and Terrorism Agent.

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