Russian Federation says Syria chemical attack 'staged' with help of foreign secret service

US Russia

If OPCW specialists reached Douma and confirmed information by Russian specialists that no chemical weapons attack has happened in Syria, this would have nullified all U.S. actions and intentions, says Russia's State Duma Foreign Relations Committee deputy chairman Alexei Chepa.

Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian ambassador to London, said the White Helmets, a British-funded civil defense force, were responsible for staging fake chemical attacks.

"Again, we are being threatened".

Russia's ambassador to the U.S. warned that there would be consequences for the attacks early on Saturday, which came in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack in the former rebel stronghold of Douma last weekend.

Trump then singled out Russian President Vladimir Putin and said, "Russia must decide if it will continue down this dark path or if it will join with civilized nations as a force for stability and peace".

A senior official in a pro-Assad regional alliance told Reuters that "all military bases were evacuated a few days ago" after an early warning from Russian Federation about the strikes.

Trump said he was prepared to sustain the response until Assad's government stopped its use of chemical weapons.

The attacks were described by the Pentagon as precise and aimed exclusively at the regime's chemical weapons facilities.

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State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert also condemned the U.N.'s decision, calling it an "outrage". He said any USA military action against Syria would be a violation of global law.

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Marine Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said there was some "activity" by Syrian surface-to-air missiles, but there were no reports of US or allied casualties. "Insulting the President of Russian Federation is unacceptable and inadmissible", the statement continued. It cited the Russian Ministry of Defense.

The minister said "intelligence agencies of a state that is now striving to spearhead a Russo-phobic campaign were involved in that fabrication".

"God forbid anything adventurous will be done in Syria following the Libyan and Iraqi experience", he told a news conference.During his meeting with Trump and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joe Dunford, Mattis pushed for more evidence of the Assad regime's culpability for the attack, to bolster the case for air strikes, The New York Times reported.

A fact-finding team of inspectors from the global chemical weapons watchdog was in Damascus and had been expected to head to the town of Douma on Saturday, scene of the suspected chemical weapons attack that killed more than 40 people.

Last month, Britain blamed Russian Federation for a nerve agent attack on an ex-spy and his daughter, accusations Russian Federation has vehemently denied.

US Ambassdor to the UN Nikki Haley said on Friday that the US had enough "proof" to act on Syria, but that the president was taking measures to avoid unwanted repercussions. Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia likewise warned in comments to reporters that Russia "cannot exclude any possibilities" with respect to a war with the USA, citing bellicose rhetoric. As he spoke, explosions rocked Damascus.

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

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