Russian titanium producer warns ban on exports to United States could backfire

Mae Love
April 16, 2018

Senior Russian figures, including the head of the military, have warned that USA missiles will be shot down and their launch sites targeted if Russian personnel come under threat. She noted in the meeting that Russian Federation "has stopped at nothing to defend the Syrian regime's multiple uses of chemical weapons".

"Insulting the President of Russian Federation is unacceptable and inadmissible", he went on.

"The targets tonight again were specifically designed to degrade the Syrian war machine's ability to create chemical weapons and to set that back", Mattis said.

Trump had also said last week that Putin bore responsibility for the "atrocity" in Douma because of his support for the Syrian government.

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley stated Friday that chemical weapons were used in an attack in Syria that left scores dead and she blamed Russian Federation for complicity, as the Trump administration continues to weigh how to retaliate and Russian Federation maintains its denial that the attack took place.

Russian Defence Ministry spokesman, Major General Igor Konashenkov, released statements by medics from Douma's hospital who said a group of people toting video cameras entered the hospital, shouting that its patients had been struck with chemical weapons and causing panic.

The U.S., France and Britain have been consulting about launching a military strike in Syria.

Speaking from the White House late Friday, US President Donald Trump said the three nations had "marshalled their righteous power against barbarism and brutality".

But the vote at the end of an emergency meeting called by Russian Federation also demonstrated again the paralysis of the UN's most powerful body in dealing with Syria's seven-year conflict.

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Defense Secretary James Mattis and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford, Jr., brief reporters on US air strikes in Syria during a joint press conference at the Pentagon on April. 13, 2018.

Erdogan also told reporters on Friday that tensions between the two countries over a suspected chemical attack in the Damascus suburb of Douma now seem to have eased.

In a nationwide address on Friday night, Trump announced the U.S., along with the United Kingdom and France, would launch "precision airstrikes" in Syria.

State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said this week that Russian Federation "ultimately bears responsibility for the brutal attacks", which the Syrian government has also denied.

What has Trump said about the attack?

The Qatari news site Al Arabiya reported a huge blast heard near Damacus Friday night, citing several media outlets.

In the UK, Cabinet ministers said that it was "highly likely" the Assad regime was responsible for the attack.

The Kremlin has said it severely condemns the "act of aggression" and has called an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council.

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