Syria forces enter Douma, last holdout in rebel bastion - state media

In recent days the administration had weighed how to intensify the attack without collapsing the Assad regime or drawing Russian Federation or Iran further into the fight.

The lengthy memo was released after President Donald Trump announced precision strikes against military targets in Syria.

The United States, Britain and France launched strikes against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack after mulling military action for almost a week.

"The United States, a country that has the largest arsenal of chemical weapons, has no moral right to accuse other countries,"Antonov said". On Wednesday, Trump warned Russian Federation to prepare for USA missiles "because they will be coming, nice and new and 'smart!'" he tweeted.

Syrian air defenses confronted on Saturday a tripartite aggression launched by the US, France and Britain on a number of sites in the surroundings of Damascus and Homs.

Western strikes early Saturday hit Syrian military bases and research centres in and around the capital and the country's centre, a monitor said, as the US, France, and Britain announced a joint operation.

The decision to strike, after days of deliberations, marked Trump's second order to attack Syria; 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. Trump said that the reason for the strike is to "establish a strong deterrent" to the use of chemical weapons.

President Trump claimed the US will have a "sustained" response to curtail Syria.

It was an unusual strategy, a departure from the usual US practice of launching surprise attacks.

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The strikes had been expected since harrowing footage surfaced of the aftermath of the alleged toxic gas attack in the Damascus suburb of Douma, which took place a week ago, and Trump reacted in an emotional tweet.

The Pentagon said one of the targets was a scientific research center located in the greater Damascus area, which it described as a Syrian center for the research, development, production and testing of chemical and biological weaponry.

"Assad ignored that warning", McConnell said.

"As our commander in chief, the president has the authority under Article 2 of the Constitution to use military force overseas to defend important, United States national interests". "All responsibility for them rests upon Washington, London and Paris".

Russian Federation said that none of the strikes hit Russia's air base and naval facility in Tartus. Syrian television reported that air defenses responded to the attack.

British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron said the United Kingdom and France had joined in the attack.

The foreign ministry said earlier on Saturday that the USA -led strikes would only "lead to inflaming tensions in the world" and threaten worldwide security.

I also have a message tonight for the two governments most responsible for supporting, equipping, and financing the criminal Assad regime.

"A red line has been crossed", said Macron.

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