Syria air strikes: what do we know so far?

Syria air strikes: what do we know so far?

Syria air strikes: what do we know so far?

U.S. President Donald Trump said he ordered the U.S. military to launch precision strikes on the targets associated with the chemical weapon capabilities of the Syrian army.

Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, director of the joint staff, said in a briefing at the Pentagon Saturday morning that the joint forces targeted three locations with 105 weapons.

"We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents", Trump said.

The Pentagon said Saturday that a series of military strikes on Syria carried out by a US-led coalition struck at the "heart" of Syria's chemical weapons program.

Douma was the last rebel-held town in the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus, and is the site of the alleged gas attack that prompted a volley of Western air strikes on Saturday. Could not have had a better result.

The sounds of massive explosions rang out across Damascus just before dawn on Saturday, ushering in 45 minutes of explosions and the roar of warplanes, AFP's correspondent in the city said.

"This massacre was a significant escalation in a pattern of chemical weapons use by that very awful regime", he added.

The U.S. led airstrikes in a coordinated attack with United Kingdom and French allies against the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar Assad.


White also said the United States is "very confident" that the Assad regime was behind the chemical weapons attack on civilians.

Officials said coalition forces made sure Moscow was aware of an upcoming operation but didn't give Russians specific details.

She said it sent a message to anyone who used chemical weapons, and came after efforts to use diplomatic channels were "repeatedly thwarted".

However, nearly a week on, the United States and some European countries have failed to provide any evidence, he said.

Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova also accused the USA and its allies of attacking Syria at a time when there was a chance for peace. "The US - the possessor of the biggest arsenal of chemical weapons - has no moral right to blame other countries". He called on Moscow to change course and join the USA and its allies in seeking a more responsible regime in Syria.

US, Britain and French forces launched attacks on Syria this morning in response to a poison gas attack that killed dozens last week.

Trump told the nation in his address the U.S. "cannot purge the world of evil or act everywhere there is tyranny". The Russian military said the missiles were fired from U.S. ships in the Red Sea as well as from tactical aircraft above the Mediterranean and by USA strategic bombers from near the Al-Tanf base.

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

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