Saturday, 21 April, 2018

US, French, British Forces Launch Air Strike Against Syria

039;We can resolve all issues by picking up the phone' – Russia's FM spokesperson on Syria standoff Putin talks to U.S. President Donald Trump
Emmett Howard | 14 April, 2018, 15:40

It is joining the USS Donald Cook within range of Syria for potentially firing Tomahawks, which were the weapon of choice when the USA struck Syria in April 2017 to punish it for using chemical weapons. It said that Syria's air defense assets have downed all of them. The strikes were carried out by manned aircraft and from ships that launched cruise missiles from the Mediterranean Sea. Trump said Washington was prepared to "sustain" pressure on Assad until he ends what the president called a criminal pattern of killing his own people with internationally banned chemical weapons.

He said that Moscow called an urgent UN Security Council meeting to discuss the development.

The assault came despite the lack of a definitive independent finding that chemical weapons were used or who had deployed them.

A senior administration official said "what you've seen tonight is not the end of the USA response".

- In response, the Russian embassy in the U.S. said it had warned that such actions would "not be left without consequences", adding that insulting President Vladimir Putin was "unacceptable and inadmissible".

Let's be clear: These limited strikes nearly certainly did not destroy the Syrian government's entire chemical weapons stockpile, let alone seriously set back its ability to fight anti-government rebels. He says one of the missiles hit the Scientific Research Center in Barzeh near Damascus, damaging a building. In Homs, one of the missiles was derailed injuring three people, he said.

The strikes were a response to a suspected chemical weapons attack on the Syrian town of Douma last weekend which killed dozens of civilians.

The OPCW had said that its experts would be visiting Douma on Saturday.

France's foreign minister says the "chemical escalation" in Syria is not acceptable because it's violating the rules of war and of humanity.

"If it is finished, and there is no second round, it will be considered limited", the official told Reuters.

"No nation can succeed in the long run by promoting rogue states, brutal tyrants, and murderous dictators". Could be very soon or not so soon at all!

The Syrian government and Russian Federation, its key ally, have vehemently denied involvement and accused rebels in Douma of fabricating the chemical attack claims.

Trump had reportedly talked to UK Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron this week, both of whom believed that the Syrian regime should be held accountable.

He added that "those responsible must be held accountable".

The planes fired Storm Shadow missiles at a facility where the United Kingdom said the Assad "regime is assessed to keep chemical weapon precursors stockpiled". "The suffering it causes is horrendous". He urged United Nations member states to show restraint and avoid any acts that could escalate the situation.

Former PM David Cameron, who lost a vote in 2013 on taking action in Syria, said Mrs May was right to take action.

CWG 2018: Manika Batra storms to TT singles gold
Batra, who had led India to a historic triumph in team championship, could not do the same alongside Das yesterday. The pairings of Sharath and Das, and Sathiyan and Batra have also made the mixed doubles semifinals.

US, allies launch coordinated missile strikes in Syria
The last time Syria dropped a chemical weapon on its own people, Trump launched missiles at an airbase that had been abandoned. Russian Federation has described the reports of a chemical attack as a "provocation" created to justify Western intervention.

'Unreliable and evasive': Indian athletes banned from Commonwealth Games
They are here on a temporary activity visa and are free to travel around the country until it expires in early May. And Cypriot rhythmic gymnast Diamanto Evripidou added two more golds, taking her haul to four for the Games.

Syria said Saturday that USA -led a missile strikes on military targets and research facilities have failed to achieve their goal, condemning them as a flagrant breach of global law.

Syrians wave Iranian, Russian and Syrian flags during a protest against US -led air strikes in Damascus, Syria April 14,2018. Hopefully, someday we'll get along with Russian Federation, and maybe even Iran.

"We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences", he said.

Earlier, the office of the Syrian Presidency tweeted a video of Bashar al-Assad going to work Saturday, with the caption "a morning of steadfastness". The airstrikes were "not about intervening in a civil war (or) regime change", May said.

Western air strikes on Syria will not diminish the army's fight against all remaining militants in the country, the military has said in a televised statement.

The Defense Ministry said Saturday that more than 100 cruise and air-to-ground missiles were launched. It did not say how numerous missiles were intercepted by Syrian forces.

However, it noted that the missiles were taken down by decades-old systems, including Neva surface-to-air missiles that were designed in the 1950s.

Russian Federation has claimed that none of its forces were injured in the attacks and that Syrian air defences shot down numerous missiles.

But Russia's ambassador to the United States warned that there would be consequences for the strikes.

France said it used missiles fired from Rafale fighter jets.

A photo released on April 14, 2018 on the Twitter page of Hezbollah's "Central War Media" account shows night footage of flares above Damascus seen through a night-vision device as Western strikes reportedly hit Syrian military bases and chemical research centres in and around Syria's capital.

"Nobody should doubt British resolve", she added. Syria's ally Russian Federation has denounced the western military action.

Multiple government targets in Syria have been bombed by the US, UK and France force in response to a chemical weapons attack. Syria's government denies using them.

A YouGov poll for The Times newspaper this week indicated that only a fifth of voters believed that Britain should launch attacks on Syrian military targets and more than two-fifths opposed action.

They seemed unlikely to have much impact on the balance of power in Syria's seven-year-old civil war, in which Assad's government has steadily gained the upper hand against armed opponents since Russian Federation intervened in 2015.

The Associated Press reported that hundreds of Syrians gathered at landmark squares in the Syrian capital, honking their vehicle horns, flashing victory signs and waving Syrian flags in scenes of defiance that followed the unprecedented joint airstrikes. Some clapped their hands and danced, others drove in convoys, honking their horns.

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