Trump still mulling military options in Syria as tensions with Russian Federation rise

UN chief Antonio Guterres | File AP

Russia may lose its hard-won share on the global titanium market if the Kremlin stops exports to Boeing, a key Russian producer has warned. Putin, in his condemnation Saturday of the airstrikes, called for an emergency U.N. Security Council session and described the assault as the latest in two decades of American-led interventions that, in the Kremlin's telling, have unwound the worldwide order.

"Insulting the President of Russian Federation is unacceptable and inadmissible", he went on.

Speaking in Moscow, Lavrov said a mission from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was due to arrive in Damascus on Saturday and would plan to go to Douma "without delay", where Russian specialists had found "no evidence" of the use of chemical weapons or chlorine.

In a nationwide address on Friday night, Trump announced the U.S., along with the United Kingdom and France, would launch "precision airstrikes" in Syria.

The statement clearly was aimed at discouraging the West from more attacks on Syria that could endanger Assad's gains on the battlefield, where Russian support has helped him secure control of most strategic areas.

As fears of a Russia-West military confrontation mounted, French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his "deep concerns" over the situation in Syria in a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

US President Donald Trump is still reviewing military options available in Syria as diplomatic tensions continue to rumble between Russian Federation and the West.

Western powers weighed their options on Friday over possible strikes against Syria's regime as pressure built to avoid an escalation and Russian Federation stepped up its warnings against military action which it said could lead to "war". Moscow alleged soon after the suspected April 7 attack that the images of the victims in Douma were fakes.

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Trump had also said last week that Putin bore responsibility for the "atrocity" in Douma.

Russian Federation has been a staunch ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad's government and has helped turn the tide of war in his favor since entering the conflict in September 2015.

She noted that In 2017, Moscow "killed" a Joint Investigative Mechanism, which the United Nations established in 2015 to investigate and assign accountability for chemical weapons use in Syria.

Guterres also said a failure to hold someone accountable for the attack could encourage more.

The Kremlin has not yet released a formal response to the offensive, however, and President Trump addressed both Moscow and Tehran in his Friday evening address.

The offensive, which included weapons launches from multiple air and naval platforms, was a direct response to accusations of a chemical weapon attack on civilians last week by Assad's Russian-backed regime.

The attack has drawn worldwide outrage and prompted the United States and its allies to consider a military strike on Syria, something Moscow has strongly warned against.

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