Trump on Assad: 'That's a butcher'

Last week Trump ordered airstrikes on a Syrian air base in retaliation for a chemical weapons attack which killed 80 people and was described by the U.S. as a nerve gas attack carried out by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces.

-Russian relations. "The working level of confidence in Russian-American relations, especially at the military level, under the administration of Donald Trump, has not improved, but rather worsened", he said.

The suspected chemical attack on rebel-held Khan Sheikhun on 4 April killed more than 80 people.

Mr Lavrov said: "As for the investigation into the incident, there is a fact-finding mission of the OPCW, there is also a joint mechanism for an investigation set out together by the OPCW and the United nations".

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley told the council: "We want to work with Russian Federation to advance a political process in Syria".

"We cannot give up and we must try, in good faith, the best we can, to have a text condemning the attack, asking for a thorough investigation", French Ambassador Francois Delattre told reporters.

"We frankly discussed the current state of U.S. -Russia relations", Tillerson said, saying that relation is at a "low point".

The April 4 attack in the town of Khan Sheikhoun killed scores of people and prompted the U.S. to launch a cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base in response, its first direct assault on the Assad government in the six-year-old conflict.

Lavrov said the probe, which Russian Federation has called for before, should be organized under the auspices of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). He added there was no talk Wednesday about a possible Trump-Putin meeting.

Tillerson will fly back to the U.S. tomorrow but says both are committed to talking about their significant differences.

"Russian President Vladimir Putin is meeting US Secretary of State Tillerson and Russian Foreign Minister [Sergey] Lavrov at the Kremlin", Dmitry Peskov said.

It is not the first time Mr Putin and Mr Tillerson have had talks.

Boris Johnson accused Russian Federation of "collaborating with the biggest terrorist of all - Assad".

Russia's alleged meddling in the United States presidential election also hovered over what was the first face-to-face encounter between Putin and any Trump administration Cabinet member.

  • Leroy Wright