Понедельник, 23 Апреля, 2018

Allies struck Syria before United Nations report on gas attack

Damascus skies erupt with anti-aircraft fire as the US launches an attack on Syria Damascus skies erupt with anti-aircraft fire as the US launches an attack on Syria
Terence Owen | 15 Апреля, 2018, 07:57

President Donald J. Trump announces military action against Syria in response to the recent alleged gas attack on civilians in Douma, at the White House, April 13, 2018.

"The United States and its allies have no proof and, without even waiting for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to take a position, have carried out this military attack. and are responsible for the regional consequences", said foreign ministry spokesperson Bahram Ghasemi. But that is to trivialize Assad's offense and suggest that the USA commander in chief can't or shouldn't act because he's besieged.

The officials said the operation was carefully orchestrated and methodically planned to minimize potential damage, adding the United States is not aware of any civilian casualties. Those aren't the only difference between the strikes.

In the aftermath of Friday's attack, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said there were no reports of U.S. losses in what he described as a heavy but carefully limited assault. U.S. officials said the strikes were in self-defense.

The allies dropped 105 missiles on three Syrian chemical weapons facilities early Saturday morning.

Syrian TV is reporting that the attack on Syria targeted a scientific research centre in Barzeh, near Damascus.

Russian and Syrian forces maintain that the chemical attacks were instigated by members of the rebel insurgency.

It said the support of Russian Federation had given the Syrian regime complete dominance of the airspace over eastern Ghouta, meaning the regime can strike civilian targets indiscriminately.

Pentagon officials said they met their objectives and struck the heart of the chemical weapons program.

That attack involved 59 Tomahawk missiles fired from two USA warships in the Mediterranean Sea.

But that didn't seem to satisfy reporters in the Pentagon press corps, who continued to ask variations of how this strike would really make a difference in ways that last year's have not.

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White says the strikes do not "represent a change in USA policy or an attempt to depose the Syrian regime".

The attacks drew immediate and harsh criticism from Russian Federation, with President Vladimir Putin calling the strikes an "act of aggression against a sovereign state ... committed without a mandate from the U.N. Security Council and in violation of the U.N. Charter and norms and principles of worldwide law".

"Horrific as Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons has been, these types of weapons are not what gives Assad his decisive advantages on the battlefield", he said. "We thank them both".

British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks in London on Saturday.

"This is how you want global affairs to be conducted now?" said Nebenzia, according to a translation of his comments in Russian.

McCausland said it also "shows that the worldwide community is not going to stand idly by and watch this particular, very important, global legal norm about the prohibition of the use of chemical weapons to go without a response".

Protesters gathered in Chicago Saturday to condemn the United States' strike against Syria.

Some critics, like Northwestern University political science professor Ian Hurd, say the decision to strike might be more about distracting from President Trump's political scandals than confronting the Assad regime. And one question that remains - despite the differences - is the level of impact.

The US-led military coalition has accused the Syrian government of having allegedly attacked the militant-held town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta region on April 7 and claimed that the Saturday airstrikes had been aimed at deterring Syria's further use of chemical weapons.

"I have repeatedly expressed my deep disappointment that the Security Council failed to agree on a dedicated mechanism for effective accountability for the use of chemical weapons in Syria", he added. "The U.S. - the possessor of the biggest arsenal of chemical weapons - has no moral right to blame other countries".

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