Israel Condemns Syria Chemical Attack, Accuses Regime of 'Crimes Against Humanity'

A child affected by an alleged chemical attack in Syria over the weekend.                        Syria Civil Defense White Helmets via APTN

President Donald Trump on Monday threatened an imminent military strike against Syria, vowing to respond "forcefully" to Saturday's apparent chemical weapons attack on civilians and warning that Russian Federation or any other nation found to share responsibility will "pay a price".

It's worth noting that Monday is the first day of work for new White House National Security Adviser John Bolton, a noted war-hawk. "Probably after the fact".

Trump also discussed the incident with French President Emmanuel Macron late on Monday, and both leaders expressed a desire for a "firm response".

As President Donald Trump assesses how to respond to the alleged chemical attack in Syria that killed and maimed dozens of civilians, lawmakers disagreed Monday what an appropriate response should be and whether Trump needed their authorization before acting.

"And if he does, it's going to be very tough. Make Assad pay a price for that kind of heinous crime". "He will. Everybody will".

While it is still unclear who is responsible for the apparent attack, Mr Trump told reporters at a cabinet meeting that he was working with military leaders to determine whether Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, Russia or Iran were responsible or jointly responsible.

Another chlorine attack was in Saraqib, a city in the rebel-held enclave of Idlib, in northwestern Syria. In April past year, the United States fired cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase after a Sarin nerve agent attack on the opposition-held town of Khan Sheikhoun killed more than 80 people.

Russian Federation has used its veto power 11 times at the council to block action targeting its Syrian ally. Jim Mattis points toward Russia's role, and says he will not rule out a military response.

Syria and its allies have denied all responsibility. "To me there is not much of a doubt, but the generals will figure it out". "It was an atrocious attack, it was disgusting".

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russian experts from its military deployment on the ground in Syria had visited the site and "did not find any trace of chlorine or any other chemical substance used against civilians".

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Asked by a reporter about a possible USA military response, Mattis said, "I don't rule out anything right now".

Western nations objected to Russia's demand for the Security Council to have effective veto power over the findings of a new body. "It was terrible." He said he will be huddling with military advisers to consider US options and "nothing's off the table". "If it's Russian Federation, if it's Syria, if it's Iran, if it's all of them together, we'll figure it out and we'll know the answers quite soon".

But what about the United States, what are the options?

Russia's United Nations envoy Vassily Nebenzia told the Security Council on Monday that "there was no chemical weapons attack", threatening that a USA retaliatory action would have "grave repercussions".

"The President wants to bring our troops home after we complete the mission to eradicate ISIS in Syria".

Tory former foreign secretary Lord Hague said he had "little doubt" that if he was still in office he would recommend military action in Syria. Washington denied this, and France, which in February had said it would strike in the event of a chemical weapons attack on civilians by Syrian government forces, said its forces were not involved.

A Lebanese politician with close links to the Syrian government confirmed that precautionary measures were being taken throughout Syria.

A group that monitors Syria's civil war said the airstrikes killed 14 people, including Iranians active in Syria.

Initially pointing the finger at Washington, state news agency SANA said the missiles had hit the T-4 airbase in central Syria.

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