Syria attack 'very soon or not so soon at all'

Syrian forces retake Eastern Ghouta, Russia says

Syrian forces retake Eastern Ghouta, Russia says

Trump on Wednesday had warned Russian Federation to "get ready" for a missile attack on its ally Syria, suggesting imminent retaliation for last weekend's suspected chemical weapons attack.

In all, Russian Federation used its veto four times to block draft resolutions seeking to establish investigations of chemical weapons use in Syria's seven-year war.

In 2017, Trump launched a cruise missile strike against a Syrian air base in retaliation for a sarin attack the United Nations later pinned on Assad.

The latest veto prevented the adoption of US-drafted resolution to investigate chemical weapons use in Syria aimed at identifying the perpetrators. "We supported them. That was the right action".

Trump's bellicose tweets came in response to a warning from Russia's ambassador to Beirut, who took to a television network run by the armed group Hezbollah to declare that any United States missiles would be shot down "as well as the sources they were fired from".

Russian Federation and the United States failed Tuesday to win support at the UN Security Council for their rival proposals to investigate chemical weapons use in Syria as the threat of military action loomed large.

Russia's ambassador to Lebanon said any U.S. missiles fired at Syria would be shot down and the launch sites targeted.

Earlier Tuesday, the global chemical weapons watchdog said it was sending a fact-finding mission to the town of Douma, where the suspected chemical weapons attack took place, following a request from the Syrian government and its Russian backers that appeared to be aimed at averting punitive Western military action.

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis said Thursday that President Donald Trump has yet to decide on whether he will pursue military action in Syria. Most members of Congress - Democrats as well as his fellow Republicans - praised Trump after the strike a year ago.

The OPCW has said the team of experts will deploy to Syria shortly.

It would have further directed the mechanism to make full use of all credible, verified and corroborated evidence collected by the OPCW fact-finding mission, while also directing it to collect and examine additional information and sources not obtained or prepared by the mission, including all information provided by the Government of Syria and others on the activities of non-State actors.

The mission will objective to find out whether or not banned munitions have been used however won't assign blame.

"Syria is keen on cooperating with the OPCW to uncover the truth behind the allegations that some Western sides have been advertising to justify their aggressive intentions", Syria's state news agency SANA said.

United Nations chief Antonio Guterres said Tuesday the OPCW should be granted unfettered access to investigate.

Aggravating the risky state of affairs within the area, Iran - Assad's different principal ally - threatened to answer an air strike on a Syrian navy base on Monday that Tehran, Damascus and Moscow have blamed on Israel.

That incident, which killed hundreds, also took place in Eastern Ghouta.

"Russia has trashed the credibility of the council", she said. After seven years of filthy terrorist war in Syria, the choice was clear, he said adding that the Council should stand up to lies, conscious that worldwide public opinion would be judging its ability to safeguard the world.

The weekly magazine Le Point said the Russian plane had flown over the frigate Aquitaine and was fully armed.

The U.S., France and Britain have been in extensive consultations about launching a military strike as early as the end of this week, U.S. officials have said.

Despite the global revulsion over chemical weapons attacks, the death toll from such incidents in Syria is only a fraction of the hundreds of thousands of combatants and civilians killed since the war began in 2011.

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