U.S. 'disappointed' by Russia's support for Syria's Assad
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 22, 2017,
Apr 22, 2017, 20:10
"By proxy Russian Federation is responsible for every civilian death last week", Fallon, whose government voiced support for U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to target the Syrian air base, wrote in the Sunday Times newspaper.
While exactly what the USA position now is seems to be anyone's guess, and indeed there is a fair chance that the Trump Administration hasn't figured it out at all, National Security Adviser HR McMaster attempted to split the difference between Haley and Tillerson, insisting that the U.S. will continue to push for regime change, but will not be the ones to impose it outright.
President Donald Trump ordered the missile strike after watching television images of infants suffering from chemical weapons injuries.
British foreign secretary Boris Johnson cancelled a planned trip to Russian Federation on Monday because the situation in Syria has changed "fundamentally" following the chemical attack and the U.S. response.
"There's not any sort of option where a political solution is going to happen with Assad at the head of the regime", she told the "State of the Union" program.
Haley's comments came after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told lawmakers he would look into stepping up sanctions on both countries, whose leadership supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who USA officials say is responsible for a chemical weapons attack against civilians last week.
He warned that the United States attacks would create a rift among countries in fighting against terrorism and divert the political negotiations about Syria into a military direction.
Critics accused him of being "Washington's poodle" after the trip was cancelled following discussions with USA secretary of state Rex Tillerson, who will go ahead with a planned trip to Russian Federation to "deliver that clear and co-ordinated" message to the Kremlin.
Iran, which has provided crucial military and political support to Mr Al Assad, meanwhile called for a fact-finding mission to determine what caused the chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the USA position on Syria hasn't changed after American warships launched a military strike on an air base in Syria Thursday in response to a deadly chemical weapons attack that killed at least 70 civilians earlier in the week.
That's because almost all Republican lawmakers - and some Democrats - blame the Obama administration's "red line" policy for enabling Syria to keep using chemical weapons in the country's long and bloody civil war.
The US had acted to ensure Syrian President Bashar al-Assad would never use chemical weapons again, she was quoted as saying by a BBC report.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump said defeating Islamic State was a higher priority than persuading Assad to step down.
The attack prompted the United States to fire 59 cruise missiles into a Syrian air base from which it said the attack was launched. Tillerson on Sunday blamed Russian Federation for enabling the poison gas attack by failing to follow through on a 2013 agreement to secure and destroy chemical weapons stockpiles in Syria.
"I think the real failure here has been Russia's failure to live up to its commitments under the chemical weapons agreements that were entered into in 2013", Tillerson said on ABC's "This Week".
The Syrian regime and its Russian and Iranian backers have vowed to keep up the fight against "terrorists" despite threats of further United States strikes against the regime following the chemical attack.
In a statement carried by Iranian state television, President Hassan Rouhani called Saturday for the formation of an worldwide fact-finding committee that "must not be headed by Americans".
"The nation of Iran will remain alongside the Syrian nation in fighting terrorism and safeguarding Syria's territorial integrity", Rouhani said in the call in the evening on April 8, according to a statement on the presidency website.
Boris Johnson will meet counterparts from leading nations in Italy for talks on Monday that will focus on pressuring Moscow to pull out of Syria and ending Assad's grip on power. The British have "no real influence", Russia's Foreign Ministry said.
A chemical attack on the residential part of Khan Sheikhun killed 85 civilians, including 20 children and 13 women. As of now, it remains unclear who led the strikes.