Trump and other Western leaders have vowed a quick and forceful response to Saturday's alleged gas attack, which rescue workers say killed more than 40 people in the rebel-held Damascus suburb of Douma, reports AFP.
The United States and several of its allies have focused on Syrian forces as being responsible, while Syria and Russian Federation have denied President Bashar al-Assad's military carried out a chemical attack. Syria's Foreign Ministry said it was not surprised by the U.S.' "reckless escalation" via Trump's tweets, the state-run news agency SANA reported, while Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a Facebook post that "smart missiles should fly toward terrorists, not the legal government that has been fighting global terrorism for several years on its territory".
The World Health Organization said Wednesday that according to reports from its partners, 500 people who sought treatment Saturday showed signs and symptoms of toxic chemical exposure.
Syria's Foreign Ministry said it was not surprised by the US' "reckless escalation" via Trump's tweets, the state-run news agency SANA reported, while Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a Facebook post that "smart missiles should fly toward terrorists, not the legal government that has been fighting global terrorism for several years on its territory".
The officials declined to comment further and it was not clear whether the Syrian actions would affect USA military planning for potential action against Syria over a suspected poison gas attack.
Syria's capital has been rocked by loud explosions that lit up the sky with heavy smoke as U.S. President Donald Trump announced airstrikes in retaliation for the country's alleged use of chemical weapons.
The British Prime Minister Theresa May, 11-04-2018.
The White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said in a brief statement after Trump met with Mattis and other members of his National Security Council: "No final decision has been made". Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said there were no reports of USA losses in what he described as a heavy but carefully limited assault. In fact, Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said no additional attacks were planned. Economic sanctions? A military strike such as one launched on a Syrian air base after a previous chemical weapons attack?
In another tweet, Trump argued his administration is "doing things that nobody thought possible, despite the never ending and corrupt Russia Investigation, which takes tremendous time and focus".
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"Our decision will not target allies of the regime or attack anyone but rather attack the regime's chemical capabilities", he said, insisting he did "not want an escalation". "This posturing may trigger a unsafe process", Pushkov said on Thursday at a meeting with representatives for the Association of Foreign Correspondents at the Federation Council.
A team from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is due to deploy to Syria "shortly" to determine whether banned weapons were used.
"We will try to make it better but it is a troubled place", Trump said.
"We also selected targets that would minimize the risks to innocent civilians", Mattis said.
More than 2,000 US troops are in Syria.
In addition to blaming Syria, Trump has further blamed Assad's backers in Iran and Russian Federation for the eastern Ghouta attack.
As anti-war protesters waved placards outside, Mrs May detailed how Britain's strategic objective for military action was to prevent the "normalisation" of chemical weapons use.
Mr Trump's UN ambassador Nikki Haley told the session the president had made it clear that if Mr Assad used poison gas again, "the United States is locked and loaded".
French President Emmanuel Macron said France had proof the Syrian government carried out the attack near Damascus, which aid groups have said killed dozens of people, and will decide whether to strike back when all the necessary information has been gathered. Having responded militarily a year ago, and having criticised President Barack Obama for inaction, this president has every reason to make another move against Assad. Macron has been increasingly bullish in his approach to Syria, including with recent efforts to help resolve the conflict in northwestern Syria between Turkey and a faction of Syrian Kurdish forces (the YPG).