Russia Relations May Be At An 'All-Time Low'

He doubled down on Russia's support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, repeating denials that Assad's government was to blame for the gas attack last week and adding a new theory that it may have been faked by Assad's enemies.

Trump also hailed the diplomatic accomplishment of China's abstention at the UN Security Council of a vote to condemn Syria.

As the council debated its response on Thursday, the United States fired cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase that the USA says was used to launch the chemical attack.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, called on Moscow to stop protecting Assad and said the United States wants to work with Russian Federation toward a political solution for Syria.

He also backed USA calls to find a political solution and said the G7 leaders were ready to work with Russian Federation to end the violence in Syria.

Only weeks ago, it appeared that Mr Trump, who praised Mr Putin throughout the USA election campaign, was poised for a potentially historic rapprochement with Russian Federation.

Russia vetoed the measure just hours after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson huddled with Russian President Vladimir Putin for two hours in Moscow.

"It would be wonderful, as we were discussing just a little while ago, if North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and our country could get along with Russia", Trump said. The two men outlined varying visions for the future of Syrian dictator Bashar Assad, as well as an array of other worldwide issues, but both pledged to work on improving relations between their respective nations.

During a joint press conference Wednesday, Tillerson said the two had a "lengthy exchange of views regarding the situation in Syria and shared perspectives on possible ways forward".

Still, Mr Lavrov sought to put a positive spin on the talks with Mr Tillerson, saying they helped improve mutual understanding. Safronkov has repeatedly called for an independent investigation with experts drawn from a much broader group of countries.

The Syrian regime and its backers, including Russian Federation, have denied Mr Assad was responsible.

"On Syria, they are miles apart and it doesn't seem that there's been any breakthrough at all", Al Jazeera's James Bays, reporting from the White House, said.

The text also condemned the reported use of chemical weapons and demanded a speedy investigation.

"We see attempts to hamper cooperation between Russian Federation and the USA and exacerbate confrontation", adding this was "short-sighted", TASS quoted him as saying. This team has already found Syrian government forces were responsible for three chlorine gas attacks in 2014 and 2015 and that Islamic State militants used mustard gas.

"It's deplorable, and we regret what is going on, but we can do little except asking to back accusations with facts", Mr Lavrov said.

  • Salvatore Jensen