Russia: Syria chemical attack 'fabrication by foreign power'

Russian President Vladimir Putin accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin and Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin visits the historica

The United States, Britain and France carried out a wave of punitive strikes against Bashar al-Assad´s Syrian regime on Saturday in response to alleged chemical weapons attacks that President Donald Trump branded the "crimes of a monster".

President Donald Trump speaks in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House as he confirmed airstrikes were underway.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed she had authorised British forces to join "US and French allies" and said their action wasn't about meddling in a civil war or regime change.

A U.K. Foreign Office spokesperson said: "Russia has wielded its United Nations security council veto six times since February 2017 to shield the Assad regime from scrutiny for its use of chemical weapons".

The strikes were the biggest intervention by Western powers against Assad in the country's seven-year-old civil war and pitted the United States and its allies against Russian Federation, which itself intervened in the war in 2015 to back Assad.

Western powers said the strikes were necessary to halt the use of chemical weapons by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"The most important thing is to refrain from ill-considered and unsafe actions that would constitute a gross violation of the UN Charter and would have unpredictable consequences", the office of the president said in a statement after the call.

Targets: The strikes were aimed at "chemical weapons infrastructure" in what the USA billed as a warning against Assad employing such weapons in the future - a warning he has not heeded in the past.

Explosions were reportedly heard in Damascus, Homs and elsewhere in Syria. The Joint Chiefs chairman confirmed that normal deconflicting lines were used.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has been urging caution in meetings, trying to avoid a strike that would trigger a broader conflict, two U.S. officials said.




"We can not tolerate the normalisation of the use of chemical weapons", Macron said in a statement. Of course the Russians want to cast western countries as unsafe adventurists when they themselves rescued the Assad regime in 2015 and have propped up all its vicious actions since then.

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Moscow has "irrefutable information that it was another fabrication", after inspection by Russian chemical experts, according to The Associated Press.

"To Iran and to Russian Federation, I ask: 'What kind of a nation wants to be associated with the mass murder of innocent men, women and children?'"

The Saturday attack targeted a hospital in the Duoma region, near the capital of Damascus, which killed 40 people and injured hundreds of others. She described it as a "limited and targeted strike" aimed at minimizing civilian casualties.

It was not immediately clear how extensive the strikes were.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said that "scientific research centers" and "several military bases" were hit in the strikes.

While the prospect of USA -led military action that could lead to confrontation with Russian Federation hung over the Middle East, the White House accused Syria of carrying out a toxic gas attack on April 7 that killed dozens of people in the town of Douma, near Damascus.

But that the U.S. did not want an "indefinite presence" in Syria and would only stay until Islamic State was destroyed.

"America does not seek an indefinite presence in Syria", he said.

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