'Cannot exclude war' Russian Federation envoys says as United States prepares Syria strike options

16 April, 2018, 01:36 | Author: Terri Saunders
  • Alexander Zasypkin

Yulia Skripal has refused consular help from Russian Federation so far and has been under police protection after being poisoned with a deadly nerve agent, but Russian Federation has questioned whether she is being held against her will. Picture: Yulia Skripal/Facebook via AP. It might also decide to combine missiles and stealth aircraft, such as the F-22 fighter jet or B2 bomber, said David Deptula, a retired Air Force lieutenant general who is dean of the Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies.

Ali Akbar Velayati, speaking in the Syrian capital on Thursday, said he visited eastern Ghouta a day earlier, calling the capture of the Damascus suburbs one of the most important victories of the seven-year civil war. Over 13,000 militants and their family members are said to have been evacuated from Douma since April 1.

Asked about the risks of US military retaliation, Mattis cited two concerns, starting with avoiding civilian casualties.

"On a strategic level, it's how do we keep this from escalating out of control, if you get my drift on that", he said.

Macron said Thursday that France would not tolerate "regimes that think everything is permitted".

He did not say whether France is planning military action against Assad's government.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said President Donald Trump "has not yet made a decision about possible actions in Syria".

She added that Russian Federation did not want to escalate any conflict, adding that it was easy to begin a conflict but hard to end it.

It said on Wednesday that samples taken from the site had not revealed any chemical substances.

The US president noted that the relationship between the US and Russian Federation is "worse now that it has ever been" and admonished the Kremlin for aligning itself with the "gas killing animal" Bashar Al Assad, Syria's president.

A team of experts from the global chemical weapons watchdog, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), was traveling to Syria and will start its investigations on Saturday, the Netherlands-based agency said. She said she spoke Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron.

Netanyahu: 'Full Support' for US Syria Strikes
The Douma attack killed over 40 people, with hundreds wounded by exposure to chemical agents. A USA embassy spokesperson confirmed the Israeli official's comment to Reuters.


"But also, it's a very, very delicate circumstance and we've got to make this judgement on a very careful, very deliberate, very well thought-through basis".

Trump on Wednesday had warned Russian Federation to "get ready" for a missile attack on its ally Syria.

On Friday, Vladimir Putin's press secretary, Dmitry Peskov, told reporters that Kremlin officials have not studied the State Duma proposal on reciprocal sanctions in detail, but said that "it is possible to assume with confidence that any measures that will be taken would not hurt Russia's national interests".

"We haven't laid out any specific actions we plan to take", she added.

Russian lawmakers have warned the United States that Moscow would view an airstrike on Syria as a war crime and that it could trigger a direct U.S-Russian military clash. Trump on Wednesday had warned Russian Federation to "get ready" for a missile attack on its ally Syria.

The U.S., France and Britain have been in extensive consultations about launching a military strike as early as the end of this week, U.S. officials have said.

As well as facing retaliations from China over his increased tariff imports, President Trump is also in the middle of a verbal battle with Russia's President Vladimir Putin.

The Assad regime's suspected use of chemical munitions against civilians galvanized the president to set aside his concerns about involvement in the conflict, just as a reported sarin attack did a year ago, prompting Trump to order a cruise missile strike on an isolated airfield linked to the civilian deaths.

Trump's UN ambassador, Nikki Haley, told the session that the president has made it clear that if Assad uses poison gas again, "the United States is locked and loaded".

On Wednesday, the UN's World Health Organization demanded access to verify reports from its partners, which include Sams, that 70 people had died - including 43 who showed "symptoms consistent with exposure to highly toxic chemicals". Sablin also said Assad accepted an invitation to visit the Siberian region of Khanty-Mansi in Russian Federation.

Assad says the Western threats endanger worldwide peace and security, and that military action would only contribute to the "further destabilization" of the region.

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