In this 2013 file citizen journalism image members of the UN investigation team take samples from the ground in the Damascus countryside of Zamalka, Syria. Picture: Local Committee of Arbeen, File

Damascus -

An 11-strong team from the international chemical weapons watchdog have been kidnapped on a fact-finding mission in the central Syrian province of Hama, the foreign ministry said on Tuesday.

“Eleven people - five Syrian drivers and six other members of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons team who were on board two vehicles - have been kidnapped,” the ministry said.

The team have been investigating allegations that Syrian government forces unleashed the industrial chemical chlorine on a rebel-held village in Hama province last month. - Sapa-AFP