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What we know about the OPCW mission to Syria

17 April 2018, 02:05 | Anna Jefferson

Russia defiant after Syria bombing, warns of “consequences”

Trump Declares 'Mission Accomplished' In Syria Strike

Russia's Ministry of Defense claimed Syria's air defense systems intercepted 71 out of 105 missiles launched at three sites in Syria early Saturday morning local time in the airstrikes carried out by the United States, Great Britain and France in response to concern Assad's forces carried out a chemical attack against civilians in the rebel-held town of Douma last weekend that killed more than 70 people.

Trump had said Friday that the United States is "prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents". There will be more.

Russian Federation continues to defend Syria even in the face of evidence of prohibited chemical weapons use.

U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley has said sanctions will be announced on Monday aimed at companies "that were dealing with equipment" related to Bashar al-Assad's alleged chemical weapons use. "Chemical weapons have been prohibited for decades and we must enforce this prohibition". The move was part of a joint Russian-US deal that averted military action threatened by the then US president, Barack Obama. "Hopefully he's gotten the message". Now Russia will pay an economic price for backing Assad in the form of more economic sanctions, U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley said Sunday. The U.S. -led airstrikes were a response to a purported chemical attack on civilians in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7.

Haley, in her Fox News interview, also defended its use as a military term, rather than as a broader political statement.

Pentagon officials on Saturday said they "assessed" that there were probably both chemical and nerve agents in the targets USA forces hit with missile strikes, but added that they had "successfully mitigated" against this in the way they attacked them.

Western diplomats have said they were ready to allow time for negotiations to make every effort to bring Russian Federation aboard.

Francois Delattre, France's ambassador to the United Nations, said Syria's chemical weapons programme must be dismantled in a "verifiable and irreversible way".




But the U.S. envoy to the global watchdog said on Monday Russia may have tampered with the site of the incident on April 7 in Douma outside of Damascus. We, likewise, commend the fearless stand of countries which are friendly to the Syria and its people.

Yet according to the US Defense Department, though Russian radar systems in Syria were on and detected US warplanes planes, Russia chose not to fire on them, instead only attempting to shoot down some of the cruise missiles.

The formal notification to Congress complies with a 1973 congressional resolution requiring the president to disclose when he has committed US troops to military action.

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson attends the BBC's Marr Show in London, Apr. 15, 2018.

US officials said Saturday that they believed the strikes would prevent future chemical attacks by the Syrian regime, but warned that the USA was prepared to "sustain" its operation if Assad continues his aggressions.

The Him Shinshar Chemical Weapons Storage Facility in Syria on April 13 and April 14. Lavrov also reiterated the Russian line that any attack on Douma was "staged".

The delays prompted a bout of complaints from the USA and U.K, which both called on Syria and Russian Federation to allow the inspectors unfettered access.

US defense officials say they have high confidence chlorine gas was used and are still assessing evidence indicating the presence of sarin gas.



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