Syrian Chemical Weapons Sites Before And After Missile Strikes

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"A short time ago, I ordered the U.S. Armed Forces to launch precision strikes on targets associated with the chemical weapons capabilities of Syrian dictator, Bashar al-Assad", the president said from the White House. The U.S. -Russia communication line, called a deconfliction channel, has been active since the strikes, officials said.

The three targets were the Barzah Research and Development Center, Him Shinsar Chemical Weapons Facility and the Him Shinsar Chemical Weapons Bunker Facility, and McKenzie showed before and after photos of each target.

The strikes, led in partnership with Britain and France, hit Syria one week after reports of a horrific chemical attack in the town of Douma that led to the deaths of men, women and children, many of whom are believed to have suffocated.

Haley blasted Russia for protecting Syria and said Moscow has emboldened the Syrian regime to continue its attacks, while the Russian ambassador to the United Nations said Washington had embarked on an "illegal military adventure".

"It's.highly likely an attempt to create complications for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) mission which was just starting its work in Syria's Douma, or an attempt to completely derail it", Interfax quoted Kosachev as saying.

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Still, the strikes Friday risk drawing the US deeper into the Syrian conflict, and could further heighten tensions between the USA and Russian Federation, which threatened earlier in the week to shoot down any USA missiles launched at the Syrian government.

- Britain used four Royal Air Force Tornados with Storm Shadow missiles in the air strikes, which they launched from the British RAF base in Akrotiri, Cyprus.

President Trump thanked the United Kingdom and France for their "wisdom and power", saying the strike could not have "had a better result".

But with Saturday's attacks, Trump has abruptly deepened U.S. involvement in Syria.

Trump has said he will hold the Syrian government, as well as its Russian and Iranian allies, accountable for the suspected attack.

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UK Prime Minister Theresa May said the strikes were not about "regime change", but "about a limited and targeted strike that does not further escalate tensions in the region and that does everything possible to prevent civilian casualties".

The "mission has not been accomplished", said Suzanne Akhras, president of the Syrian Community Network.

Russia, meanwhile, demanded a vote on a United Nations resolution that would condemn "the aggression" against Syria by the USA and its allies. Trump also warned Russian Federation and Iran not to stand by their ally in Damascus.

Officials noted that they are still collecting information and more details will be provided as assessments are completed.

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