Published: Sat, April 08, 2017
USA | By Cassandra Hanson

Syrian base blasted by United States cruise missiles

Washington gave Russian Federation advance warning of the attack.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said the strike against the Sharyat airbase in Homs, northern Syria, was "a positive response" to the "war crimes" of the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

The Kremlin added that Putin sees the latest USA military action as "an attempt to distract from the mounting civilian casualties in Iraq". He ordered the attack in retaliation to a "barbaric" chemical attack on civilians allegedly by the troubled regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

The Pentagon added the strike "was meant to deter the regime from using chemical weapons again".

September 27, 2013: The U.N. Security Council orders Syria to account for and destroy its chemical weapons stockpile, following a surprise agreement between Washington and Moscow, averting USA strikes.

Russian Federation has provided military support for the Syrian government since September 2015, turning the balance of power in Assad's favor. The government refers to all groups fighting against it, including mainstream rebels, as terrorists, and has denied any involvement in the chemical attack. It is the first direct US assault on Syrian government forces.

While Trump did not say whether he now thought, in the wake of the gas attack, Assad should be driven from power, Tillerson said earlier Thursday Assad had to go and that there was "no role for him to govern the Syrian people" in the future.

Farron joined the Conservative government in supporting Trump's decision but called on the May to consider more meaningful action such as further strikes on the Assad regime.

"We hope for more strikes. that these are just the beginning", spokesman Ahmad Ramadan told AFP news agency. As a result, the risk of a direct aircraft collision between the USA and Russian Federation had "significantly increased", Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

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A foreign ministry official praised "the courageous decision by U.S. President Donald Trump to respond to the (Syrian) regime's crimes against its people in light of the failure of the global community to stop the regime from brutalizing its people".

Ahead of the strike against the airbase, Russian officials warned the U.S. against making any "snap judgments" regarding the chemical weapons attack, which struck a rebel-held town Tuesday in Syria's Idlib province. But U.S. military officials were convinced that the Assad regime had carried out the massacre.

Moscow is suspending a memorandum with the prevent incidents and ensure flight safety, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"I would tell you that the response from our allies, as well as the region and the Middle East has been overwhelmingly supportive of the action we taken", Tillerson said.

A statement on Syrian state TV said "American aggression" had targeted a Syrian military base with "a number of missiles" but gave no further details.

The Russian Defence Ministry meanwhile mocked the effectiveness of the US strikes, saying only 23 missiles had found their targets.

"Tuesday's horrific chemical attack was a war crime which requires urgent independent United Nations investigation and those responsible must be held to account".

The six-year civil was had killed hundreds of thousands of people and displaced millions, contributing to the largest refugee crisis since the end of World War Two.

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