Kremlin comments on Ivanka Trump's 'role' in Syria strikes

Tillerson had met with Group of Seven (G-7) ministers and Middle Eastern allies in Italy earlier.

Before leaving for Russia, Tillerson issued a stern warning to the Kremlin - either stand with the United States and other "like-minded" nations against Syria or side with Assad and his allies Iran and the militant group Hezbollah.

The official said the now convinced Russian Federation controlled the drone.

But he stopped short of directly calling for the removal of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, saying the U.S. "Or Russia can maintain its alliance" with Syria and Iran.

"We need to remember that not 10 years ago, but 100 or 120 days ago, the concern in Europe was that the United States and the European Union were moving apart", Minister Alfano said on Sunday.

"Are we going to get involved with Syria?"

"Nothing has changed in our posture", a senior administration official told the AFP news agency.

"These agreements stipulated Russian Federation, as the guarantor of a Syria free of chemical weapons, would locate, secure, and destroy all such armaments in Syria".

The event led President Donald Trump to order retaliatory air strikes two days later against the airfield where Assad's attack was launched.

There was one key difference: After the recent launch of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles on a Syrian air base, President Donald Trump can now offer each a credible threat that the USA will use force in Syria if the stalemate persists. Both countries have voiced support for the United States response to Assad's chemical weapons use.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson used a visit Monday to a World War II memorial to declare that the United States will stand up to aggressors who harm civilians, as the Trump administration sought to rally world leaders behind a strategy to resolve Syria's protracted civil war.

Tillerson's trip comes after an American official said the USA has drawn a preliminary conclusion that Russian Federation knew in advance of the chemical attack - an allegation that heightens already acute tensions between Washington and Moscow.

Despite tensions, and unlike his British counterparts, Tillerson's Moscow visit was not canceled - a good sign, some say, for efforts to prevent a U.S. -Russia conflict.

Russian Federation has condemned the U.S. missile strike.

Lavrov says Russian Federation has lots of questions about the "very ambiguous" and "contradictory" ideas coming from the U.S. He says through a translator that it's important for Russian Federation to understand the "real intentions" of the Trump administration.

"And our hope is Bashar al-Assad will not be part of that future", he said, without explicitly calling for Assad's removal.

  • Larry Hoffman