Syria chemical attack was fabricated: Russian Federation

US ambassador Russia nikki haley

A potential hot war between Russia and the coalition of the United States, Britain and France might have inched closer to reality tonight, as a strong statement was issued by the Russian Ambassador to the United States of America in reponse to tonight's coalition air strikes on Syria.

"It is our understanding the Russians may have visited the attack site", US Ambassador Kenneth Ward said at a meeting of the OPCW in The Hague yesterday. Again, we are being threatened.

SIMON: And if I might ask you in the half minute we have left, is the bromance, if you please, between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump at an end from the Russian point of view?

Russian Federation has labeled the coordinated strikes on Syria by the U.S., France, and Britain "unacceptable and lawless" - while warning of serious consequences. "It is clear that any retaliation for the latest use of chemical weapons, possibly the 25th use we have seen recently in Syria, must be bigger than the last retaliation", according to Peter Roberts, another analyst at the Royal United Services Institute.

President Vladimir Putin said that the military action launched by the USA, in cooperation with Britain and France, was "an act of aggression" against a sovereign state and strongly condemned the act. As he spoke, explosions rocked Damascus.

The military action is not about intervening in Syria's civil war or changing its government, she said.

In a statement, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said Australia supported the strikes, which sent "an unequivocal message to the Assad regime and its backers, Russian Federation and Iran, that the use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated".

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 said Friday that "the United States estimates that (Syrian President Bashar) Assad has used chemical weapons in the Syrian war at least 50 times".

"The combined American, British, and French response to these atrocities will integrate all instruments of our national power - military, economic, and diplomatic".

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A day before a team from the worldwide chemical weapons watchdog was to arrive in Douma, just east of Damascus, Sergey Lavrov said Russian experts have already inspected the site of the alleged attack and found no trace of chemical weapons, adding without elaboration that Moscow has "irrefutable information that it was another fabrication".

The U.S. has about 2,000 troops on the ground in Syria as advisers to a makeshift group of anti-Islamic State fighters known as the Syrian Democratic Forces.

Russia's foreign ministry said today that Western strikes on Syria came as the country had "a chance of a peaceful future".

"The use of chemical weapons by anyone, anywhere, under any circumstances is illegal and utterly reprehensible", Mr Turnbull said. Konashenkov also said the Russian military "has evidence that Britain had a direct involvement in arranging this provocation". The Syrian government has categorically denied the accusation.

Col Gen Rudskoi said the Syrian military used Soviet-era air defence missile systems with high efficiency, shooting down all of the missiles aimed at four key Syrian air bases.

Russian officials made explicit threats to shoot down USA missiles prior to the strike, and even to target the missile launchers.

Moscow alleged soon after the suspected April 7 attack that the images of the victims in Douma were fakes. They have offered to participate, determined that any strikes are sizable enough to weaken the military presence in Syria of their arch-foe Iran, another Assad backer.

"We are continuing to assess intelligence and are engaged in conversations with our partners and allies", it said.

Lavrov also said Russian specialists who examined the attack found no trace of chemical weapons.

"As other nations step up their contributions, we look forward to the day when we can bring our warriors home", Trump said.

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