Russian Federation launches disinformation campaign to defend Syria
Russian Federation launches disinformation campaign to defend Syria
US says it has proof Syria government was behind gas attack
17 April, 2018, 02:38
Stepping up the pressure on Syria's president, U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley indicated the sanctions to be announced Monday would be aimed at sending a message to Russian Federation, which she said has blocked six attempts by the U.N. Security Council to make it easier to investigate the use of chemical weapons.
But soon after Mr Macron's comments, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said an early exit was still desirable.
The British envoy to the OPCW said the body had recorded 390 allegations of the use of banned chemicals in Syria since 2014, and that a failure by the OPCW to act risked allowing "further barbaric use of chemical weapons".
The OPCW's executive council was meeting behind closed doors Monday to discuss the April 7 attack on Douma in which 40 people were said to have been killed by suspected chlorine gas.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denied that Moscow had interfered with any evidence: "I can guarantee that Russia has not tampered with the site", he told the BBC in an interview.
Inspectors from the global chemical weapons watchdog met Syrian officials in Damascus on Monday but have so far been denied access to the former rebel stronghold where the alleged use of toxic substances provoked a US-led strike.
Meanwhile, media reports noted that the United Kingdom government has confirmed a "20-fold" increase in disinformation being spread by Kremlin-linked social media "bot" accounts since the United Kingdom, US and France attacked Syria's chemical weapons infrastructure on Saturday.
Assad told a group of visiting Russian lawmakers that the strikes were accompanied by a campaign of "lies and misinformation" against Syria and Russia in the U.N. Security Council.
"Russia confirms its commitment to ensure safe (sic) and security of the mission and will not interfere in its work", the Russian embassy in The Hague said in a tweet.
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She said, "These strikes are about deterring the barbaric use of chemical weapons in Syria and beyond".
He said the allies acted without a United Nations mandate because of the "constant stalemate of the Russians" in the Security Council.
Haley said Trump is prepared to strike Syria again if that happens, though she declined to say how the United States would respond to the use of conventional weapons.
The Russian military said its chemical experts visited Douma shortly after the alleged attack and found no trace of chemical agents in ground samples.
Nikki Haley: "Last night, we obliterated the major research facility that it used to assemble weapons of mass murder".
Russia's deputy foreign minister said the delay was due to U.S. air strikes. They said Haley is one of the most disciplined and cautious members of the Cabinet, especially when it comes to her public appearances.
May called for wider diplomatic efforts on the use of chemical weapons, "including the full range of political and economic levers", but stopped short of directly calling for sanctions against countries supplying the Assad regime with chemical weapon technologies.
On Sunday the inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons with the met Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad in the presence of Russian officers and a senior Syrian official.
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Russian Federation denounced the attacks as aggression against its ally, but there was no sign of an immediate military response. The US-led strike was launched even though the OPCW fact-finding team was due to head to Douma on Saturday.
The cosmetics included brands such as Kylie, MAC and Anastasia - the reality television celebrity Kylie Jenner's cosmetics line. The UK beauty industry is worth £4 billion and it is thought that social media has played a big part in the growth.
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