Ian Henderson (OPCW)

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Person.png Ian Henderson (OPCW)Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
InterestsDouma attack
OPCW whistleblower

Not to be confused with Ian Henderson, the "Butcher of Bahrain"

On 20 January 2020 Ian Henderson, a former lead investigator for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), testified at the UN that no scientific evidence exists to support claims that a chemical gas attack took place in Douma, Syria, in April 2018.

Ian Henderson, who worked 12 years for the international watchdog body, was the OPCW’s inspection team leader and engineering expert and assisted in the fact-finding-mission (FFM) in Douma.

Speaking before a UN Security Council session, Henderson said:

“We had serious misgivings that a chemical attack had occurred,” referring to the FFM team in Douma, adding that the evidence he compiled “provided further support for the view that there had not been a chemical attack.”[1]


The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has begun responding to queries by the press about a leaked document which contradicts official OPCW findings on an alleged chemical weapons attack last year in Douma, Syria. The prepared statement they’ve been using in response to these queries confirms the authenticity of the document.

To recap, a few days ago the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media (WGSPM) published a document signed by a man named Ian Henderson, whose name is seen listed in expert leadership positions on OPCW documents from as far back as 1998 and as recently as 2018. It’s unknown who leaked the document and what other media organisations they may have tried to send it to.

The report picks apart the shaky physics and narratives of the official OPCW analysis on the gas cylinders allegedly dropped from Syrian government aircraft in the Douma attack, and concludes that “The dimensions, characteristics and appearance of the cylinders, and the surrounding scene of the incidents, were inconsistent with what would have been expected in the case of either cylinder being delivered from an aircraft,” saying instead that manual placement of the cylinders in the locations investigators found them in is “the only plausible explanation for observations at the scene.”

To be clear, this means that according to the assessment signed by an OPCW-trained expert, the cylinders alleged to have dispensed poison gas which killed dozens of people in Douma did not arrive in the locations that they were alleged to have arrived at via aircraft dropped by the Syrian government, but via manual placement by people on the ground, where photographs were then taken and circulated around the world as evidence against the Syrian government which was used to justify air strikes by the US, UK and France. There were swift military consequences meted out on what appears now to be a lie. At the time, the people on the ground were the Al Qaeda-linked Jaysh Al-Islam, who had at that point nothing to lose and everything to gain by staging a false flag attack in a last-ditch attempt to get NATO powers to function as their air force, since they’d already effectively lost the battle against the Syrian government.[2]


A Document by Ian Henderson (OPCW)

TitleDocument typePublication dateSubject(s)Description
File:Henderson-Testimony-UN.pdfTranscript10 February 2020Douma attack
Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
Transcript of the testimony of ex-OPCW inspector Ian Henderson before the UNSC on 20 January 2020 about the alleged chemical weapons attack in Douma, Syria on 18 April 2018, and the subsequent OPCW report about it.


Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:The World: What is Really Happeningblog post25 May 2019Craig MurrayAlleged nerve gas attack in Syria - Amanda Martin tweets to George Monbiot: "Don't you smell a set up here though? Craig Murray doesn't think Assad did it."
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