Syria denies US allegations of coming chemical attack

Frederick Owens
June 27, 2017

The government of the United States on Monday announced that it has identified the Syrian regime's "possible preparations" for launching a new chemical weapons attack in Syria, and warned that the president and his Armed Forces "will pay a heavy price" if that happens.

The US president said Assad will pay a "heavy price" if he goes ahead to "conduct another mass murder".

US Central Command, which oversees operations in the Middle East, said in a statement: "For this matter, we have no information to add to what has already been stated".

In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in a conference call with reporters that Russian Federation has no information about the impending threat of a chemical weapons attack and warned that any retaliation against the Assad government would be "unacceptable".

On April 4, the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces supported by the United States blamed the Syrian government for an alleged chemical weapon attack in Khan Sheikhoun in Syria's Idlib province.

Sir Michael said Britain had backed the Donald Trump when the U.S. president mounted missile strikes against Assad's forces following a devastating chemical attack that killed dozens of civilians last April.

On April 6, Trump ordered missile strikes into the government-controlled Shayrat air base in the troubled country.

The attack on April 4 was reportedly the third chemical attack by the Syrian regime in a little over a week.

Syria has denied White House allegations that it may be preparing a new chemical attack, insisting again that it has never used such arms.

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The strike was the first direct military action taken by the United States against the regime of Assad in the country's six-year civil war.

Officials at the state department and the Department of Defense were caught off guard by the White House announcement, suggesting it was not discussed in advance with other national security agencies, U.S. media report.

Russian Federation and Iran are both staunch backers of the Assad regime.

US military officials declined to say what kind of chemical weapons may be at Shayrat now, or how they observed them.

The U.S. strikes hit a Syrian airbase believed to be the source of the chemical weapons.

Syria's war began in March 2011 with anti-government protests that spiralled into a complex and devastating conflict that has killed more than 320,000 people.

The two groups said the USA -led coalition was behind the strike.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday that Washington would continue to provide weapons after the Raqqa battle is over.

Washington has repeatedly struck Iranian-backed militia and even shot down a drone threatening US-led coalition forces since the April military strike.

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