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Russian Federation 'severely condemns' attack on Syria

Russian Federation 'severely condemns' attack on Syria

A Russian bid for the United Nations Security Council to condemn U.S., British and French air strikes on Syria over a suspected chemical weapons attack failed on Saturday after only China and Bolivia joined Russia to vote in favor of a draft resolution.

Assad, who is supported by Iranian-back fighters as well as the Russian air force, has cemented his control over most of the western, more heavily populated, part of the country.

More than 100 missiles were fired from ships and manned aircraft, and the allies struck three of Syria's main chemical weapons facilities, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Joseph Dunford said.

Russia's foreign ministry said today that Western strikes on Syria came as the country had "a chance of a peaceful future".

Trump said the objective of the campaign was to "establish a strong deterrent against the production, spread and use of chemical weapons".

During a phone call late on Thursday, UK Prime Minister Theresa May and US President Donald Trump agreed on the need to deter chemical weapon use in Syria.

"We have absorbed the strike", the official told Reuters.

Russia's ambassador to the United Nations, Vassily Nebenzia, told reporters "The situation (in Syria) is very risky".




A meeting of the North Atlantic Council will be held Saturday afternoon, a NATO official told CNN.

Speaking to reporters in Moscow, Lavrov reiterated a strong warning to the West against military action in Syria, saying any such "adventures" in Syria would increase flows of refugees into Europe.

He went on to say that the alleged chemical attack in Douma is just an American pretext and he blamed the Syrian opposition, not the Assad regime, for it. "We can not take such risks", he said at a forum.

Russia's Ministry of Defense said it believed the action by the US, UK and France was not in retaliation to the alleged chemical attack in Douma but instead was a reaction to the "success" of the Syrian army in liberating its territory from rebels. He continued by saying that global law has been systematically violated in Syria and that he feels angry at reports of chemical weapons use in the country.

She said "the United States estimates that (President Bashar) Assad has used chemical weapons in the Syrian war at least 50 times".

Since 2015 France has carried out air strikes against Islamic State in Syria as part of allied forces linked to the US-led coalition, conducting about 5 percent of total coalition air missions.

However, Iran - another key ally of the Assad government - condemned the strikes. "But should the United States and our allies decide to act in Syria, it will be in defense of a principle on which we all agree", Haley told the U.N. Security Council.