UN body dismisses Russsia's attempt to condemn western allies "aggression" in Syria

Vassily Nebenzia

On Thursday, Trump held a meeting with his national security team, but White House officials say no final decisions have been made.

"Insulting the President of Russian Federation is unacceptable and inadmissible", he added.

The United States and France said they have proof it took place and, alongside the UK, are considering military retaliation, the BBC reports.

A Downing Street spokesperson added: "They agreed it was vital that the use of chemical weapons did not go unchallenged, and on the need to deter the further use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime".

UK Prime Minister Theresa May said the military action was believed to have been successful.

But he also appeared anxious to avoid a wider conflict, saying France would "in no way allow an escalation". Her father remains hospitalized, but British health officials say he is improving. US defense officials did not confirm if any allied missiles had been shot down.

Russia's foreign ministry said Syria had been attacked just as it had a chance for peace.

A fact-finding mission from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is expected to arrive in Douma on Saturday.

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Diplomats have expressed concern that the experts could be used as hostages or human shields.

"The military operation was necessary and appropriate to preserve the effectiveness of the global ban on the use of chemical weapons and to warn the Syrian regime of further violations", she said in a statement voicing support for the joint US, UK and French action.

"The immediate priority is to avert the danger of war", said Moscow's United Nations ambassador Vassily Nebenzia on Thursday.

According to Interfax news agency, Russia's defence ministry also said that Syria intercepted the US and allied attacks using Soviet-produced hardware, including the Buk missile system. "We thank them both", Trump added. And it would establish a body to determine responsibility for chemical attacks, call for a cease-fire in Syria, unimpeded access for all humanitarian aid, and an urgent resumption of negotiations on a political settlement.

Across Western capitals opposition to military action also grew.

The attack came moments after U.S. President Donald Trump said he ordered precision strikes targeting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's chemical weapons capabilities after a poison gas attack that killed at least 60 people last week.

US Ambassador Nikki Haley told the council "there is clear information demonstrating Assad's culpability".

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