Russian Federation says West only interested in overthrowing Syria's Assad

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Zakharova suggested that Western media bore some responsibility for the strikes, claiming the White House cited "multiple media sources" on the suspected chemical weapons attack in Douma. "The immediate priority is to avert the danger of war".

He accused Washington of putting global peace at risk and said the situation was "very dangerous".

But Nebenzia said the goal was to oust President Bashar al-Assad from power.

Following the US-led strikes, however, "we consider it possible to return to examination of this issue not only in regard to Syria but to other countries as well", Rudskoi said.

In a warning to the West against further strikes on Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said it is now considering arming Assad with Russian S-300 long-range surface-to-air missile systems for the first time.

US President Donald Trump seems to have been misled by his aides on the number of Russian diplomats planned to be expelled in the wake of the Skripal incident, senior US administration official said, TASS with reference to The Washington Post reported.

"This is grotesque", Pierce said of the Russian statement as she left an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council called by Russia on USA threatened military action in response to the alleged attack.

The head of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Ahmet Uzumcu, told the closed-door meeting that his inspectors had failed to gain access to the site so far.

Just minutes into the bombardment, the strike appeared to be much more severe than the response to a similar chemical attack by Syria in April 2017.

"We can not depend on the mood of someone on the other side of the ocean when he wakes up, on what a specific person takes into his head in the morning", Mr Dvorkovich said at a forum in Krasnoyarsk, according to the TASS news agency.

The Violations Documentation Center (VDC), which records alleged violations of worldwide law in Syria, said bodies were found with foam at the mouth, discoloured skin and burns to the eyes.

Meanwhile, Putin's inner circle of senior officials and allied oligarchs has seen their wealth drop by billions of dollars over the past week since the latest round of U.S. sanctions.

The Russian ambassador to the United States railed against the US-led coalition campaign against suspected Syrian chemical weapons facilities.

Russia's foreign ministry said today that Western strikes on Syria came as the country had "a chance of a peaceful future." the Russian government's response came after U.S., United Kingdom and France launched precision strikes on Syrian chemical research and storage facilities in the capital city of Damascus.

Since Syria joined the OPCW in 2013, "we have sought to use diplomatic channels.to stop chemical weapons use in Syria but our efforts have been repeatedly thwarted", Wilson said.

Konashenkov released statements he said came from medics at Douma's hospital, saying a group of people toting video cameras entered the hospital, shouting that its patients were struck with chemical weapons, dousing them with water and causing panic.

Russian officials from President Vladimir Putin on down condemned the strike as an act of aggression against a sovereign state carried out on the pretext of staged chemical attack.

Mr Trump, who has cancelled a planned trip overseas, has been canvassing support for strikes from the leaders of France and the UK. But reading between the lines, there was a second message: The incoming cruise missiles did not cross the threshold that would provoke a military response against Western forces. "Could be very soon or not so soon at all!" it said.

He said: "We're having a number of meetings today, we'll see what happens". And it shows that Washington appears to have succeeded for now in delivering a blow that did not provoke Russian Federation into a military response - even though the degree to which the missile attack hindered Assad's chemical-weapons capability is far from clear.

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