Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

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

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

Russian Federation has denied interfering with evidence at the site of a suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria's Douma that claimed over 70 lives and led to military intervention by the USA, the United Kingdom and France.

According to Syrian medics and a statement by the World Health Organisation, more than 40 people died in an April 7 strike on the former rebel outpost of Douma of symptoms consistent with the use of chemical weapons.

Moscow warned against any strikes and threatened to retaliate.

Maj Gen Konashenkov said Britain was "directly involved in the provocation".

Russia, the main ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, says there is no evidence of a chemical attack in Douma and has warned the U.S. and its allies against conducting any military strike.While Trump himself remained silent on Syria on Friday, Macron - who has said France has proof that Assad's government used chemical weapons in Douma - spoke by phone with Putin.

As fears of a Russia-West military confrontation mounted, French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his "deep concerns" over the situation in Syria in a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Russian leader warned against "ill-considered and risky actions ... that would have consequences beyond conjecture".

During a U.N. Security Council meeting Friday, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley condemned Russian Federation for saying the attack was staged.

British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron were both due to face their respective legislatures later in the day over their decision to join the USA in launching missiles at suspected chemical weapons sites in Syria, in an attempt to punish the Bashar al-Assad regime. "Russian Federation can complain all it wants about fake news, but no one is buying its lies and cover-ups", Haley said.

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