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Suddenly ordered Syrians in Basel chemicals

The Brenntag chemical company from Germany has exported about his eponymous subsidiary in Basel two substances to Syria, which are suitable both for the production of medicinal products as well as for the production of chemical weapons. The transactions with these Dual-Use reported materials, the "Sunday newspaper" and "Le Matin Dimanche" first. In the case of the subsidiary is the successor of the Schweizerhall Chemie AG, which belongs since 2006 to the Brenntag group.

Brenntag attaches importance to the finding that the export of around 5 tonnes of Isopropanol and 280 kilograms of diethyl amine in the year 2014 against valid at the time, Swiss regulations have failed. The also the for the export control, the competent state Secretariat for economic Affairs confirmed.

According to current knowledge, the question of whether the delivery of the EU sanctions regime against Syria has been bypassed. It is not clear that Brenntag is produced, the substances in Switzerland and subsequently exported. The fabrics were rather to have been first imported from the EU into Switzerland, before you delivered Brenntag to Syria. The diethylamine was from Belgium and the Isopropanol from Germany. This is proven by documents, the daily

Voltaren for battle fuel

in 2012, long before the question of Syria-business, issued the EU has a Directive on the export of highly concentrated diethyl amine to Syria, a requirement for authorisation. Because diethylamine is not only a starting material for Voltaren and similar pain relievers, but also for the nerve agents VX and Tabun.

According to the Swiss authorities, the 280 kilograms in Syria by the pharmaceutical company, MPI, is a licensee of the Basel, Novartis has been used for the production of a Schmerzgels on Voltaren-base. This is well possible, for the question of the sanction for circumvention, but irrelevant. Because the diethyl amine was made in Belgium, would have to be obtained before a direct Export to Syria in each case, a permit. In fact, this duty was circumvented by the starting material is spent, first in Switzerland and then to the war zone was carried out.

Syria has bought in front of the Brenntag business yet never diethylamine in Switzerland.

Bern has introduced a similar provision in June 2018. The Federal Council was at the time even explicitly say that he rules with the re-enactment of the EU-exactly the kind of circumvention of wanting to prevent transactions. To the question of when exactly and by whom the two substances have been introduced in Switzerland, did not want to Brenntag.

According to the data of the customs administration, the rich up to the year 2005, bought in Syria in front of the Brenntag business yet never diethylamine in Switzerland. This reinforces the suspicion that the Pharma company MPI wanted to deal with the order in Switzerland and the EU sanctions.

investigation required

similarly, with the Isopropanol, a type of Alcohol, which is an indispensable starting material in the production of the Nerve chemical warfare agent Sarin. In July 2013, the EU also exports highly concentrated Isopropanol to Syria, a requirement for authorisation. The supplied by Brenntag substance was produced only in August 2013, i.e. after the adoption of the provisions in Germany. Here, too, so a workaround could be the business via Switzerland.

For the last Time Syria had purchased in 2005, Isopropanol in Switzerland, and about four tons. While there was, therefore, apparently about nine years of no interest, to obtain this type of Alcohol in Switzerland, were the Syrians, of all things, after the adoption of the EU Directive in the summer of 2013, a German chemical branch in a Non-EU country, Switzerland, with the Dual-Use stock of materials.

Three non-governmental organizations, including the Geneva Trial International, are now calling for a full investigation of the events. Background the recent conviction of companies and managers in Belgium. These were delivered starting in 2014 illegal Isopropanol to Syria.

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 17.02.2019, 20:38 PM

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