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United Nations rejects Russian attempt to condemn USA aggression in Syria

17 April 2018

"The current state of U.S. and United Kingdom network devices, coupled with a Russian government campaign to exploit these devices, threatens our respective safety, security, and economic well-being", it said.

He said the analysis was done at the request of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

Speaking at an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council on Saturday (Sunday NZ Time), hours after the US, France and the UK launched missiles meant to take out Syria's chemical weapons capability, American Ambassador Nikki Haley called on Russian Federation - the main backer of the Syrian regime - "to take a hard look at the company it keeps".

Both Russia and Iran, Assad's other main ally, have warned his enemies against military action in recent days, underlining their commitment to the Syrian government they have armed and supported through years of conflict.

The Russian military has also made belligerent statements, but Putin himself and the Moscow foreign ministry have instead played the injured party, demanding proof of Assad's culpability.

Earlier, Britain's delegation to the OPCW accused Russian Federation and the Syrian government of preventing the worldwide watchdog's inspectors from reaching Douma.

A second USA official said targets were being carefully selected with the aim of damaging Assad's ability to conduct further gas attacks, while avoiding the risk of spreading poisonous fallout in civilian areas.

Russian Federation has repeatedly accused rebels of staging or spreading rumours of chemical attacks, but the involvement of Britain is a new claim.

She added that the attacks were not about "regime change" or "intervening in a civil war", but were to "deter the use of chemical weapons" by the Syrian government.

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Sunday that further Western attacks on Syria would bring chaos to world affairs, as Washington prepared to increase pressure on Russia with new economic sanctions.

In a Russian TV show, President Vladimir Putin said that USA allies led strikes in Syria without United Nations Security Council mandate was a violation of worldwide law.

"Even non-significant incidents would lead to new waves of migrants to Europe and to other consequences, which neither we nor our European neighbours need", Lavrov said. Consequently, the anxiety in Moscow centered on the possibility of strikes on Russian assets or advisors (Gazeta.ru, April 12).

The Kremlin also said on Monday that British allegations that chemical weapons inspectors were not being allowed access to Douma were groundless, adding Russian Federation has consistently supported an investigation into the suspected gas attack. The government, however, said evacuations from Douma were ongoing and no Syrian government forces had entered the town.

The accusations followed an earlier statement by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who said that "intelligence agencies of a state that is now striving to spearhead a Russo-phobic campaign were involved in that fabrication". He didn't elaborate or name the state.

"Together we have sent a clear message to Assad and his murderous lieutenants that they should not perpetrate another chemical weapons attack". British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron said the United Kingdom and France had joined in the attack. The top brass, in contrast, remained muted: Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov refrained from any threats, despite a month ago suggesting the possibility of a counter-strike on USA platforms if the headquarters in Damascus where Russian advisors worked were ever hit.

United Nations rejects Russian attempt to condemn USA aggression in Syria