Wednesday, 13 December, 2017

Syria Chemical Attack: Trump Condemns "Affront To Humanity"

Madeline Patrick | 07 April, 2017, 02:49

The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Russian Federation has an obligation to denounce Syrian leader Bashar Assad for using a deadly gas on civilians.

The Syrian government has strongly denied involvement, accusing the opposition of trying to frame it to make up for military losses on the ground.

Riyad Hijab, the head of the High Negotiations Committee that represents the Syrian opposition in the worldwide political process, happened to be in Washington this week when the Syrian government perpetrated its latest chemical weapons attack, killing dozens of innocent men, women and children in Idlib province. Please support our efforts.

Muallem spoke at a press conference in Damascus two days after a suspected chemical attack left at least 86 people dead in the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhun in northwestern Syria. This view was disputed by Western officials, including U.K. Foreign Minister Boris Johnson, who said "all the evidence" he had seen so far indicated the Syrian military was behind the attack.

"When you kill innocent children, innocent babies - babies, little babies - with a chemical gas that is so lethal, people were shocked to hear what gas it was, that crosses many, many lines", Donald Trump said in the White House Rose Garden.

Syria officially relinquished its chemical arsenal and signed the Chemical Weapons Convention in 2013 to avert military action after it was accused of an attack outside Damascus that killed hundreds.

"A few weeks ago, this council attempted to hold Assad accountable for suffocating his people to death - with toxic chemicals", said Nikki Haley, the US Ambassador to the UN.

Trump's condemnation of Tuesday's attack has been surprisingly strong, even if he did not give any clear indication about how the USA might respond.

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"When there's attacks like this, there is renewed interest on the topic of regime change and the question of where does Assad go because of the human cost of the conflict", Hawthorne explained.

Asked whether his country would give access to a fact-finding mission over the use of chemical weapons, Moallem said: "Our experiences with worldwide investigating committees were not encouraging, because they come out of Damascus with certain indications which then change at their headquarters". "It is now my responsibility", Trump said while standing alongside Jordan's King Abdullah II at the White House.

"Yesterday's chemical attack, a chemical attack that was so horrific in Syria against innocent people, including women, small children and even lovely little babies, their deaths were an affront to humanity", Trump said, speaking in the Rose Garden alongside Jordan's King Abdullah.

The visuals from the scene were reminiscent of a 2013 nerve gas attack on the suburbs of Damascus that left hundreds dead and prompted an agreement brokered by the USA and Russian Federation to disarm Assad's chemical stockpile.

But Moscow said disagreements with the USA over Syria are unlikely to change the nature of relations between the two countries in a major way.

Trump maintained that Obama's failure to enforce his red line threat "was a blank threat (that) set us back a long ways, not only in Syria but in many other parts of the world".

But there have been repeated allegations of chemical weapons use since.

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