Saturday, 26 May, 2018

Local protesters demonstrate against US military strikes in Syria

Syria Damascus air strikes Local officials respond to US missile strikes on Syria
Charlie Simmons | 16 April, 2018, 11:52

U.S. President Donald Trump praised the military strike on Syria as a "perfectly executed" operation and said it was aimed at ending the use of such weapons of mass destruction.

That appeared to contradict Trump's own pledge that the United States, France and Britain would sustain the military campaign until Assad stops using prohibited chemical agents.

USA envoy Haley also said that if Trump draws the red line, he enforces it and the United States will continue to sustain pressure on Syria.

"Last night, US and allied forces launched precision air strikes against the Syrian regime in response to its use of chemical weapons against innocent civilians".

The three allies used ships, a submarine and warplanes to launch a barrage of 105 guided missiles towards three chemical weapons facilities in Syria, officials said, including a research center on the outskirts of Damascus.

White says the target choices were "very methodical", calling it a "deliberate decision" to go after chemical weapons facilities.

State media published images of a cloud of reddish smoke hanging over the capital and said that air defences were activated to block the attack. Russian Federation said on Saturday it would consider supplying S-300 surface to-air missile systems to Syria following the Western strikes, but this was not discussed at the meeting with Assad, agencies reported.

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A UN Security Council vote brought by Syria's ally, Russia, and condemning the US-led strikes was rejected.

"This is going to set the Syrian chemical weapon program back for years".

According to USA officials, the operation comprised three United States destroyers, a French frigate and a U.S. submarine.

Mattis said the use of military action is authorized under Article II of the Constitution and resulted in the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons research development and production.

"The time has come for Western forces that support terrorism to admit that they have lost control", Assad said to his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani on the phone.

Bashar Jaafari, Syria's envoy to the United Nations, said the US, UK and France were "liars, spoilers and hypocrites" who exploited the United Nations "to pursue your policy of interference and colonialism". "And we can not wait to alleviate further humanitarian suffering caused by chemical weapons attacks". He authorized a barrage of Tomahawk cruise missiles to hit a single Syrian airfield in April 2017 in retaliation for Assad's use of sarin gas against civilians.

European Union foreign ministers will discuss the air strikes in Luxembourg on Monday, amid concerns by some member states about the legality of the operation without United Nations approval, and about the categorical attribution of responsibility to Syria ahead of reports from the inspectors on the ground.

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