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Russia Warns of "Consequences" as Putin Denounces Syria Strikes

Russia Warns of

"The military operation was necessary and appropriate to preserve the effectiveness of the global ban on the use of chemical weapons and to warn the Syrian regime of further violations", she said in a statement voicing support for the joint US, UK and French action.

Putin's more restrained statement nonetheless argues that the attacks mark the second time the USA has launched strikes in response to alleged use of chemical weapons by Assad without adequate proof.

Announcing the strikes, US President Donald Trump criticised both Russian Federation and Iran, which have backed Assad's government. He said BZ was part of chemical arsenals of the U.S., Britain and other North Atlantic Treaty Organisation countries, while the Soviet Union and Russian Federation never developed the agent.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday said Moscow had "irrefutable" evidence that an alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria was staged with the help of a foreign secret service.

"The mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has set off to Syria not so quickly and without abundant enthusiasm but under our and Syrian pressure". The Kremlin readout said that Putin warned against rushing to blame the Syrian government before conducting a "thorough and objective probe". British officials said up to 75 people were killed.

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"We did have some surface-to-air missile activity from the Syrian regime", General and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford said at a Pentagon briefing. In a reference to the US, he said that "it would only benefit those who are protected by the ocean and expect to sit there and engage in continuous efforts to stir up the region in order to advance their geopolitical goals".

The UN Security Council is to meet again on Friday, at Russia's request, to try to defuse the standoff, as United States President Donald Trump appeared to back away from imminent action, days after warning Russian Federation to "get ready" for missile strikes.

On Thursday, Russia's military said Douma has been brought under full control of the Syrian government under a Russia-mediated deal that secured the evacuation of the rebels and thousands of civilians after it was recaptured by Syrian forces.

By contrast, eight countries voted against the Russian draft - the US, UK, France, Netherlands, Sweden, Kuwait, Poland, and Ivory Coast.

On the ground in Syria, rebels in Eastern Ghouta surrendered their heavy weapons and their leader left the enclave, signalling the end of one of the bloodiest assaults of the seven-year war and a major win for the Assad regime.


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