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US-Syria missile strike: World leaders differ on strike

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Donald Trump and Bashar Assad. PHOTO:Iran frontpage
United States President
Donald Trump on Thursday ordered a massive military strike on a Syrian air base
in retaliation for a “barbaric” chemical attack he blamed on President Bashar

There had been international outrage over Tuesday’s suspected
chemical attack that killed dozens of civilians but Moscow stood by its
Damascus ally and warned of the negative consequences of any military action

The international community has reacted to the strike, which
was carried out with Tomahawk cruise missiles, Arabnews stated.


Saudi Arabia said Friday that it “fully backs” a US air
strike on a Syrian government airbase in retaliation for a suspected chemical
weapons attack on a rebel-held town.

“Saudi Arabia fully supports the US military operations
against military targets in Syria, which were a response to the regime’s use of
chemical weapons against innocent civilians,” a foreign ministry official told
the state SPA news agency.

The official said the regime had only itself
to blame after “odious crimes it had committed for years against the Syrian

He described US President Donald Trump as
“courageous” for taking action when “the international community has failed to
put a halt to the regime’s actions.”


Kremlin says US strike on Syria is “aggression against
sovereign state in violation of international law“

Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that US cruise
missile strikes on a Syrian air base broke international law and have seriously
hurt US-Russia relations, news agencies cited the Kremlin as saying on Friday.

Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov was cited as
saying that the Russian leader, a staunch ally of Syrian President Bashar
Assad, regarded the US action as “aggression against a sovereign nation” on a
“made-up pretext” and as a cynical attempt to distract the world from civilian
deaths in Iraq.

Peskov was quoted as saying that Russia did
not believe that Syria possessed chemical weapons and that the US move would
inevitably create a serious obstacle to creating an international coalition to
fight terrorism, an idea that Putin has repeatedly pushed.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş said that he
hopes the US operation in Syria contributes to achieving peace and added that
the process must be accelerated.

The United States informed France ahead of its missile
strikes on Syrian military positions, France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Marc
Ayrault said on Friday.

“I was told by (US Secretary of State) Rex
Tillerson during the night,” Ayrault told Reuters and France Info radio in the
Mauritanian capital Nouakchott where he is on a diplomatic visit.

“Use of chemical weapons is appalling and
should be punished because it is a war crime,” he said, adding that Russia and
Iran needed to understand that supporting Syrian President Bashar Assad made no
sense, and that France was not seeking a confrontation with those two countries.

Iran said on Friday denounced the strike as “destructive and
dangerous,” the Students News Agency ISNA quoted Foreign Ministry spokesman as

“Iran … condemns use of chemical weapons … but at the
same time believes it is dangerous, destructive and violation of international
laws to use it as an excuse to take unilateral actions,” ISNA quoted Bahram
Qasemi as saying.

“Iran strongly condemns any such unilateral strikes… Such
measures will strengthen terrorists in Syria … and will complicate the
situation in Syria and the region.”

Tehran is Syrian President Bashar Assad’s main regional ally
and has provided military and economic support to his fight against opposition
groups and Daesh militants.

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