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Over 100 cruise missiles fired at Syria, many intercepted: Russian Federation

14 Avril 2018

President Donald Trump on Friday ordered the United States military - in conjunction with France and the United Kingdom - to launch strikes on Syria in retaliation for a suspected chemical weapons attack by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad on a Damascus suburb last week.

Syrian state media said the attack would fail and called it a "flagrant violation of worldwide law".

In conflicts, there are rules about what's acceptable - and chemical weapons are never supposed to be used.

"Syrian means of air defense: S-125, S-200 air defense systems, Buk and Kvadrat were used in the repelling the missile strike". Syrians poured into the streets for defiant demonstrations of their national pride.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte says his government "understands" the military action of the three North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies in Syria because "the use of chemical weapons is a serious crime the worldwide community can not accept".

The statement also urged global organizations and institutions to categorically condemn the attacks.

Mr Trump said the Syrian regime's use of chemical weapons on Douma was a "significant escalation in a pattern of chemical weapons use by that very bad regime". Putin added that Russian military experts who inspected Douma found no trace of the attack.

At a Pentagon briefing Friday, US officials described the strikes as a joint operation consisting of British, American and French forces.

Four Royal Air Force Tornado jets from the Akrotiri base in Cyprus fired Storm Shadow missiles at a military facility near Homs where it was assessed that Syria had stockpiled chemicals, Britain's Ministry of Defence said.

"We do not seek confrontation and we refuse any possibility of military escalation and that is the reason why, with our allies, we have insured that the Russians were warned beforehand", she said.

"Bashar al-Assad must be held accountable for his use of chemical weapons against civilians, however these current strikes are being carried out without the authorization of the United States Congress".

Macron, who spoke to Trump again on Friday, said France had proof the Syrian government launched chlorine gas attacks and his country would not tolerate it.

Last year, Trump said that the use of chemical weapons in Syria "crosses a lot of lines for me".

U.S. aircraft and ships were used in the attack, according to multiple USA defense officials.

"This is hard to do in a situation like this", he said, in light of the volatility of chemical agents.

Russia's Defense Ministry said out of the 103 missiles fired, 71 were downed - with Syrian air defense systems intercepting most rockets fired.

Putin said the U.S. actions in Syria made the humanitarian catastrophe worse and caused pain for civilians.

Russia sees Saturday's missile strike by the U.S. and its French and British allies as the West's response to Moscow's growing role in the world, said Sergei Markov, a Russian political analyst and a former member of Putin's United Russia Party.

The presence of Russian troops and air defenses in Syria were among numerous complications weighing on Trump, who must also consider the dangers to roughly 2,000 American troops in the country if Russia were to retaliate for US strikes.

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.

The targets included research centers in Damascus believed to have produced chemical weapons.

The third target was a chemical weapons equipment storage facility and an important command post, also west of Homs, Dunford said. "After 17 years of war in Afghanistan and 15 years of war in Iraq, we need a political strategy to bring peace and stability to the region, not more USA military intervention". "It is not about regime change", May said in a statement.

The strikes this morning targeted three sites associated with the Syrian government's chemical weapons programme.

All but six were confirmed to have been conducted by the Syrian government.

Saturday's strikes were limited in scope despite bellicose rhetoric from both sides, while a direct clash between the West and Russian Federation in Syria could quickly flip the seven-year-old conflict in a new and unsafe direction. That April 2017 attack consisted of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles.

Rudskoi said the USA actions in Syria were aimed at destabilizing the situation in the region.

A United States official said the strikes had targeted chemical production facilities.

Brig. Gen. Ali Mayhoub, who read the statement on Syrian TV, said "our air defenses effectively shot down majority". An initial team of inspectors had only arrived in Syria on Friday.

Iran said such arbitrary and unilateral moves will further undermine the pillars of peace and security in the world, bring about more instability and unrest across the globe and promote extremism and terrorism.

But the White House says later that no final decisions on a response have been made.

Over 100 cruise missiles fired at Syria, many intercepted: Russian Federation