Syria strikes: Russian Federation calls for emergency session of United Nations security council

Sergio Conner
April 15, 2018

The Fact-Find Mission of the OPCW is going into Syria to probe the Douma attack. "The president has not made that decision".

A draft resolution circulated on Monday by the US would set up a new body to investigate chemical weapons attacks like the one it says occurred over the weekend in Douma, near Damascus. But on Thursday, Trump wrote that he: "Never said when an attack on Syria would take place".

Nebenzia and Syrian Ambassador Bashar Ja'afari said that despite the council's failure to welcome the OPCW fact-finding mission, its investigators are heading to Syria with support from both Russian Federation and Syria.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, meanwhile, said there was no threat of the situation in Syria resulting in a military clash between Russia and the United States.

Mr Trump's tweet was reacting to a warning from Russian Federation that any USA missiles fired at Syria over the deadly assault on the rebel enclave of Douma near Damascus would be shot down and the launch sites targeted.

For days, Trump has been warning Syria and its backers, Russian Federation and Iran, over the suspected gas attack.

"You shouldn't be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and enjoys it!"

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, however, indicated that evidence of what happened was still being studied. "We have big doubts about that", the Russian diplomat said. "We're still working on this".

The assessment also suggested that a nerve agent was used in the suspected poison attack, but further evidence was needed to determine the type of agent, USA government sources told the news agency. The Aquitaine is equipped with 16 cruise missiles and 16 surface-to-air missiles.

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Trump on Tuesday canceled a planned trip to Latin America later this week to focus instead on responding to the Syria incident, the White House said. The U.S., Britain and France voted against both measures but didn't have to use their vetoes.

Trump also added that America's relationship with Russian Federation is "worse now than it has ever been", countering conspiracy theories about his closeness to Vladimir Putin.

"Russia's obstructionism will not continue to hold us hostage", Haley told the Security Council.

But there have been calls for the USA, the European Union and United Nations chief Antonio Guterres to protest and for ambassadors to stage a conference walk out during the upcoming four weeks of the Syrian presidency. Mr Trump tweeted, referring to Moscow's alliance with Assad.

"This is basically a diplomatic set-up", said Richard Gowan, the United Nations expert at the European Council on Foreign Relations.

Skoog said that while the council failed to agree on a way forward, the inaction did not create a "legal vacuum" that would justify air strikes by the United States, France and Britain.

Western leaders are mulling possible responses, including Macron and May.

Beyond chemical weapons, the Syrian government has also been accused of violating worldwide rules regarding nuclear production.

The French president does not need parliamentary permission to launch a military operation.

The Sound and Picture Organization, an activist collective in eastern Syria, said on Tuesday that Iranian fighters and members of Lebanon's Hezbollah group have evacuated their positions in the Boukamal area, near Iraq's border.

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