Published: Mon, April 16, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

New sanctions on Russian Federation coming, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley says

New sanctions on Russian Federation coming, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley says

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has spoken highly of the Soviet-made weapons involved in thwarting the missile strike on Syria carried out by the USA, the United Kingdom and France, member of Russia's State Duma (lower house of parliament) Sergei Zheleznyak said on Sunday following meeting between Russian lawmakers and the Syrian president.

Russian Federation has military forces, including air defenses, in several areas of Syria to support Assad in his long war against anti-government rebels.

Dozens chanted and held signs to demonstrate their disappointment in President Trump's decision to use military force in Syria without first letting global organizations confirm the chemical attacks.

Later, Trump tweeted: "Mission Accomplished".

The first of the targets was a research center near the capital city of Damascus; 76 missiles were launched against the center. That attack, [Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White says], hit a Syrian military air base and was meant to focus on Syria's ability to deliver chemical weapons.

- Downing Street has published a document setting out why it says military action against the Syrian regime was legal, stating it has met three conditions permitted under global law.

Syria released video of the wreckage of a bombed-out research lab, but also of Assad arriving at work as usual, with the caption "morning of resilience" and there were no immediate reports of casualties. But they have refrained from targeting Assad's government, apart from a volley of United States missiles past year.

Haley says the fact that Assad was making the use of chemical weapons "more normal and that Russian Federation was covering this up, all that has got to stop".

- UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn criticised the British Prime Minister, describing the action as legally questionable. Russian Federation has long backed the Assad regime and has repeatedly vetoed UN Security Council resolutions concerning chemical weapons.

He said "there is strong evidence that the Assad regime used chemical weapons again on April 7". Paris released a dossier that it said showed Damascus was to blame for the poison gas attack on Douma, the last town holding out in a rebel-held swathe of territory near Damascus that government forces have recaptured this year.

French President Emmanuel Macron spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday, hours before the Western missile strikes.

They circulated a joint draft resolution at the Security Council that also calls for unimpeded deliveries of humanitarian aid and enforcement of a ceasefire and demands that Syria engage in UN-led peace talks, according to the text obtained by AFP.

U.S. ambassador Nikki Haley warned her United Nations counterparts that although the mission was designed as a one-off, that did not preclude further action against Assad.

President Donald Trump has warned Syria's government the United States is "locked and loaded" to strike again if it carries out new chemical attacks.

"When our president draws a red line, our president enforces the red line", Haley stressed. Syrian state media called the attack a "flagrant violation of worldwide law". China too opposed the strikes.

"So, today the nations of Britain, France and the United States of America have marshaled their righteous power against barbarism and brutality", said the president in a televised address from the White House.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged restraint and asked states to avoid any escalation. In a USA military action a year ago in response to a sarin gas attack, missiles took out almost 20 percent of the Syrian air force, the Pentagon said.

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