[Beset with grave and heightening threat to his Presidency, Trump, as the
perceived escape route, is out to push the human race to the very brink of
Trump warns Russia on Syria missile threat
38 minutes ago
Media captionThe US president has said "nothing's off the table" - so what
options are on the table?
US President Donald Trump has tweeted that Russia should "get ready" for
missiles to be fired into Syria, in response to an alleged chemical attack
at the weekend.
Senior Russian figures had threatened to meet any US strikes with a
Mr Trump had promised a "forceful" reply to the suspected attack.
President Bashar al-Assad's government, which receives military backing
from Russia, denies being behind any chemical attack.
In his tweet, Mr Trump called Mr Assad a "gas killing animal".
On Saturday, Syrian opposition activists, rescue workers and medics said
the rebel-held town of Douma in the Eastern Ghouta region had been attacked
by government forces using bombs filled with toxic chemicals.
The Syrian-American Medical Society said more than 500 people had been
found with symptoms "indicative of exposure to a chemical agent", and on
Wednesday the World Health Organization demanded access to the area to
verify reports from its partners that 70 people had died.
WHO demands 'chemical attack site' access
Viewpoint: Chemical weapons ‘threat to West’
Syria 'chemical attack': What we know
After the attack, Mr Trump and his Defence Secretary, James Mattis,
cancelled travel plans.
The US and Western allies said they have agreed to work together.
But several senior Russian figures warned of a Russian response to a US
attack, with Alexander Zasypkin, Moscow's ambassador to Lebanon, repeating
on Wednesday a warning by the head of the military that missiles would be
shot down and their launch sites targeted.
Mr Trump's tweet referred to this warning.
Skip Twitter post by @realDonaldTrump
Donald J. Trump
Russia vows to shoot down any and all missiles fired at Syria. Get ready
Russia, because they will be coming, nice and new and “smart!” You
shouldn’t be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and
4:27 PM - Apr 11, 2018
58K people are talking about this
Twitter Ads info and privacy
End of Twitter post by @realDonaldTrump
What happens next?
The US and allies - France and Britain - are believed to be preparing for a
US President Donald Trump cancelled his first official trip to Latin
America so he could focus on Syria.
That decision suggests the US response may involve a larger military
operation than a limited strike, says the BBC's Barbara Plett Usher in
French President Emmanuel Macron said any strikes would target Syrian
government chemical facilities.
But The Times reports that the UK's Prime Minister Theresa May has urged Mr
Trump to provide more evidence of the suspected chemical attack.
A US Navy guided-missile destroyer, the USS Donald Cook, is in the
Mediterranean, and the European air traffic control agency, Eurocontrol,
has warned airlines to take "due consideration" while in the eastern
Mediterranean over the next few days, because of the possible launch of
missiles into Syria.
What chemical weapons does Syria have?
Syria decision looms for Prime Minister May
Russia warns US over Syria response
Moscow's UN ambassador, Vasily Nebenzia, warned Washington that it would
"bear responsibility" for any "illegal military adventure" it carried out.
What is the UN doing?
On Tuesday the UN Security Council failed to pass any measures to set up an
inquiry into the alleged attack.
As permanent members of the council, Russia and the US both have the power
of veto. They both blocked each other's proposals to set up independent
The US-drafted resolution would have allowed investigators to apportion
blame for the suspected attack, while Russia's version would have left that
to the Security Council.
A team from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)
is due to deploy to Syria "shortly" to determine whether banned weapons
were used in Douma.
But the OPCW will not seek to establish who was responsible for the attack.
Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
US ambassador Nikki Haley and Russian ambassador Vasily Nebenzia clashed at
The UN session was the latest in a series of showdowns between Russia and
the US and saw harsh words exchanged between the countries.
Ambassador Nebenzia accused the US of "planting" a resolution" as a
justification for military action.
"We could find ourselves on the threshold of some very sad and serious
events," he said.
US envoy Nikki Haley responded by calling the vote a "travesty".
"Russia has trashed the credibility of the council," she said. "Whenever we
propose anything meaningful on Syria, Russia vetoes it."
Peace Is Doable
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