Allies seek Syria ceasefire as Putin warns of 'chaos'

The Latest: Theresa May defends move to join Syrian strikes

The mission is still expected to make it to Douma, where government security agencies and Russian military police have deployed after the town fell under government control, raising complaints from the Syrian opposition that evidence of chemical weapons' use might no longer be found.

The Pentagon said it gave no explicit warning.

"This was not geared towards weakening Assad's conventional military capabilities", said Kamran Bokhari, a senior fellow with the Center for Global Policy in Washington. "There are differences in the three countries' positions on the Syria issue and it was impossible to hide even before the attack". They also called the attack an impediment to peace.

It was in September 2013 that Russian Federation reached a deal with the USA that was to destroy Syria's arsenal of chemical weapons.

Eyewitnesses reported multiple government helicopters over Douma on April 7th, and said barrel bombs were dropped from those helicopters, the officials said.

Russian Federation condemned the strikes and warned of "consequences".

Protesters used a metal grinder to try to cut off the statue's feet and tug it down with ropes before riot police intervened and fired tear gas to disperse the crowd.

"Our worst apprehensions have come true". Macron spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday, hours before the Western missile strikes.

The OPCW team is tasked with determining whether banned substances were used in the attack, a charge that both Syria and its most powerful ally, Russia, have vehemently denied.

The Kremlin released a statement from Putin saying the strike was an "act of aggression against a sovereign state which is in the front line in the fight against terrorism", and that there was no proof a chemical weapons attack had taken place.

He also said that the Syrian conflict was far from being resolved but there was no military solution to it. The NATO alliance gave its full backing; NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said in Brussels that the attack was about ensuring that chemical weapons can not be used with impunity.

"On the intelligence collected by our services, and in the absence to date of chemical samples analysed by our own laboratories, France considers, beyond possible doubt, a chemical attack was carried out against civilians at Douma ... and that there is no plausible scenario other than that of an attack by Syrian armed forces", the report said.

"Yes, yes, yes - a million times yes to Bashar al-Assad", said Radina Awad, another participant who wore sunglasses.

[We] condemn and denounce the brutal aggression that took place this morning against our precious country Syria by the USA, France and the United Kingdom, under the allegations that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons.

The U.S. and its allies accused Assad's forces of using chemical weapons, a claim Syria and Russian Federation have rejected.

A United Nations-OPCW Joint Investigative Mechanism also looked at responsibility for chemical weapons use.

May will address Parliament - where she doesn't have a majority - next week.

In an interview published Sunday in the Journal du Dimanche newspaper, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian reached out to Russian Federation, saying "we should join our efforts to promote a political process in Syria that would allow a way out of the crisis".

Next week, he is to become the first foreign leader to be hosted by Donald Trump on a state visit.



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