After Syria attack, US-Russia tensions rise, but military confrontation fears ease

After Syria attack, US-Russia tensions rise, but military confrontation fears ease

Turkey, on Syria's northern border, called the airstrikes "an appropriate response" to a recent chemical attack in Syria.

And it shows that Washington appears to have succeeded for now in delivering a blow that did not provoke Russian Federation into a military response - even though the degree to which the missile attack hindered Assad's chemical-weapons capability is far from clear.

Hezbollah condemned the air strikes in Syria, where the Iran-backed Lebanese group backs the Assad regime.

Russia's foreign minister says Moscow has received a document from a Swiss lab that analyzed the samples in the nerve agent poisoning of an ex-Russian spy, which points at a Western-designed nerve agent as a likely cause.

Speaking in Moscow, Lavrov said a mission from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was due to arrive in Damascus on Saturday and would plan to go to Douma "without delay", where Russian specialists had found "no evidence" of the use of chemical weapons or chlorine. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Friday that Britain was "directly involved in the provocation", but didn't elaborate or provide evidence.

Meanwhile a highly placed Russian politician likened Trump to Adolf Hitler, and said he regarded the military action as a move against Russia.

In his televised address from the White House on Friday evening, Trump said the USA was prepared to sustain economic, diplomatic and military pressure on Assad until the Syrian leader ends what Trump called a criminal pattern of killing his own people with internationally banned chemical weapons.

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.

The Russian President, who backs Syrian President Bashar Al Assad, has called for an immediate United Nations Security Council meeting to what the Kremlin has called "an attack on Syria". 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.

The Russia-U.S. military contacts on Syria are not enough to meet the needs of dialogue, and the two countries should use diplomatic methods rather than threats when communicating with each other, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday.

Simultaneously, France's Leader Emmanuel Macron was quoted stating he has in his possession "proof" that "Syrian authorities targeted private citizens inside Douma using chemical substance weapons" recently.

If confirmed, the town's seizure would mark the last stage of Assad's takeover of the rebel-held enclave of eastern Ghouta.

Hours later, the Russian Embassy in Damascus said no Russians were known to have been hurt in the overnight airstrike.

Before his White House trip, Mattis told reporters that the still assessing intelligence as to whether the Assad regime is responsible for the gas attack that killed anti-government rebels and their children.

"Our president has not yet made a decision about possible action in Syria".

Syria's Foreign Ministry said Wednesday that Trump's threats to attack are "reckless" and endanger global peace and security.

Meanwhile, Bouthaina Shabaan, the political and media adviser to President Bashar al-Assad, said Wednesday that her country is not fearing the USA threats of striking Syria.

Damascus skies erupt with service to air missile fire as the U.S. launches an attack on Syria early Saturday, April 14, 2018.

Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad and Russian Federation that supports him have been blamed for this attack.

True, the administration has finally imposed significant sanctions against Russia, as mandated by Congress a year ago, and Trump has struck out against Russian President Vladimir Putin's complicity in chemical attacks against Syrian civilians. The NATO alliance gave its full backing; NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said in Brussels that the attack was about ensuring that chemical weapons can not be used with impunity.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo told Congress on April 12 that a "couple hundred Russians" were killed by USA artlllery and air strikes in February when a base housing US troops and their allies was attacked in eastern Syria. There is no reason for this, he wrote, adding that "Russia needs us to help with their economy, something that would be very easy to do, and we need all nations to work together".

The Russian Defense Ministry. the U.S. used Navy ships in the Red Sea, Air Force B-1B, F-15 and F-16 aircraft in the dawn attack.

Mr Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Syria's neighbour Turkey, said yesterday he had spoken by telephone with Mr Trump and Mr Putin, and told both that increasing tensions in the region was not right.