Russian Federation warns of 'consequences' to Western strikes in Syria
16 April, 2018, 02:43 | Author: Becky Perry
President Donald Trump on Saturday declared "Mission Accomplished" for a USA -led allied missile attack on Syria's chemical weapons program, but the Pentagon said the pummeling of three chemical-related facilities left enough others intact to enable the Assad government to use banned weapons against civilians if it chooses. "Could not have had a better result".
The Russian military said it had observed movements of US Navy forces in the Gulf.
The war of words between the US and Russian Federation over Syria's use of chemical weapons against its own people has escalated.
Addressing the Security Council, Nikki Haley, the U.S ambassador to the United Nations, said Russian Federation used veto to "kill" the Joint Investigative Mechanism, the tool to figure out who used chemical weapons.
Asked about the risks of US military retaliation, Mattis cited two concerns, starting with avoiding civilian casualties. -Russian collisions or confrontations in Syrian airspace. Syria's official SANA news agency reported.
Iran's pragmatist President Hassan Rouhani also warned that the US-led missile attack on Syria would lead to further destruction in the Middle East. He keeps alive the idea that the United States can and should cooperate with Russian Federation without conditions and thereby permits the portion of Americans who constitute his base to ignore the threat Russian Federation poses.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the Security Council Friday that "there is no military solution to the conflict". Vice President Mike Pence cut short his schedule at a summit in Lima, Peru to call Republican and Democratic congressional leaders ahead of Trump's announcement, his spokesman Jarrod Agen said.
Assad vowed Friday to respond to the attack, tweeting, according to translations, that "Good souls will not be humiliated". Similarly, Syria reportedly promised to defend itself if attacked, though it's unclear what that means, as they have little capability to wage war against the US. Russian Federation has also used its United Nations veto six times to prevent condemnation of Assad's use of chemical weapons.
The General Command of the Syrian Army stressed the air defense repelled most of the missiles fired by the USA in a joint attack with United Kingdom and France against civilian and military targets within Syria.
At the Pentagon, the director of the Joint Staff, Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, said the more than 100 missile strikes delivered a blow late Friday to the "heart" of Syria's chemical weapons network.
The U.S. -led operation won broad Western support.
"Smart missiles should fly toward terrorists, not the legitimate government that has been fighting worldwide terrorism for several years on its territory", she said. Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned the use of chemical weapons and cited "very strong evidence" that the Syrian regime had again deployed them, but the country ruled out participating in any military action. A joint military operation, possibly with France rather than the U.S.in the lead, could send a message of global unity about enforcing the prohibitions on chemical weapons and counter Syria's political and military support from Russian Federation and Iran. That did not mean military strikes would continue.
He noted that OPCW's report didn't contain any mention of BZ, adding that Russian Federation will ask the chemical weapons watchdog for an explanation.
As Haley began her remarks, she broke from the prepared text to say, "I started to listen to my Russian friend and respond, but instead I am in awe, Vassily, of how you say what you say with a straight face".
"The big concern here is always mistakes, unintended consequences", said Zilberman. He said the missiles hit the "sweet spot", doing the expected level of damage while minimizing the unintentional release of toxic fumes that could be harmful to nearby civilians.
Meanwhile, Moscow said the formerly rebel-held district of Eastern Ghouta - including Douma, the target of Saturday's attack - had been "totally stabilized" and would soon be patrolled by Russian military police.
McKenzie described one site, the Barzah Research and Development Center, near Damascus, as a "core" facility for Syria's chemical weapons program.
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Echoing the USA stance, France said Assad's government had reached a "point of no return" with repeated use of chemical weapons . Palestinian protesters hurl stones at Israeli troops at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, Friday, April 13, 2018.
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