Assad warns Western action would 'further destabilise' region

MGN Online

MGN Online

Levan Dzhagaryan, in a Farsi interview with ISNA, agreed with the idea that Donald Trump's claim about the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons is aimed at military intervening in Syria.

They seemed unlikely to have much impact on the balance of power in Syria's seven-year-old civil war, in which Assad's government has steadily gained the upper hand against armed opponents since Russian Federation intervened in 2015.

And US ambassador Nikki Haley told the meeting: "We are confident that we have crippled Syria's chemical weapons program".

The White House said Thursday that Trump met with his national security team to discuss Syria but "no final decision has been made" despite the president's tweet the previous day warning Russian Federation to "get ready" for missiles headed to Syria, its ally.

"Let us not forget that, ultimately, our efforts must be about ending the awful suffering of the Syrian people", Guterres said.

"Right now, recently, it's all been in Syria, 'Assad did it!"

Polling for The Times indicates that only a fifth of voters believe that Britain should launch missiles on Syrian military targets.

There were no immediate reports of casualties.

The situation in the town of Douma is "normalizing", the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

Trump tweeted on Wednesday: "Russia vows to shoot down any and all missiles fired at Syria".

It follows a wave of strikes by the US, UK and France against alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria. A YouGov poll showed just one in five members of the public support a strike on Syria.

"They agreed it was vital that the use of chemical weapons did not go unchallenged, and on the need to deter the further use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime", the prime minister's office said in a statement reported by Reuters.

Syrian state media said the attack would fail and called it a "flagrant violation of global law".

After meeting with Ali Akbar Velayati, the advisor to the leader of the Islamic Revolution of Iran for International Affairs, and the delegation accompanying him, the Syrian president noted that those actions might put international peace and security at risk. Moscow condemned the Western states for refusing to wait for their findings.

"Never said when an attack on Syria would take place".

On Wednesday, Trump appeared to suggest airstrikes were imminent, warning Russia, Syria's key ally, to "get ready" for military action.

A second witness said the Barzah district of Damascus had been hit in the strikes. "Luckily there are no substantial losses or damages".

The Syrian conflict pits a complex myriad of parties against each other with Russian Federation and Iran giving Assad military and political help while fractured opposition forces have had varying levels of support at different times from the West, Arab states and Turkey. The two have once again pointed the finger at the Syrian government, accusing it of "a pattern of unsafe behavior in relation to the use of chemical weapons". But they have refrained from targeting Assad's government, apart from a volley of USA missiles past year.

US President Donald Trump on Wednesday tweeted that Russian Federation shouldn't be allied with a "Gas Killing Animal", in reference to Assad whose regime is accused of carrying out the attack on Douma, which activists and rescuers say killed at least 40 people.

The suspected use of chemical weapons has drawn the West back into Syria's seven-year conflict. That strike had effectively no impact on the war.

Mr Mattis acknowledged that the United States conducted the airstrikes only with conclusive evidence that chlorine gas was used in the 7 April attack in Syria. Evidence that the nerve agent sarin was also used was inconclusive, he said. Attacking Syria is a crime.

Damascus is still permitted to have chlorine for civilian use, although its use as a weapon is banned.

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