Russia says West only interested in overthrowing Assad

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Russian Federation accused Washington of putting global peace at risk and requested a United Nations meeting in NY later in the day but it was not confirmed that it will happen.

Russia, which has backed the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad, has joined Damascus in denying an attack even took place - even though USA authorities have declared it did with near certainty.

Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at a Pentagon briefing that the first allied strike targeted a scientific research center in greater Damascus involved in the development and production of chemical weapons.

He said there was a heightened "danger of escalation" because of the Russian military presence in Syria.

During a week of tense sabre-rattling, Russian officials periodically warned the USA that a military response may spiral out of control to war.

But the vote at the end of an emergency meeting called by Russian Federation also demonstrated again the paralysis of the UN's most powerful body in dealing with Syria's seven-year conflict.

Worldwide investigators from the global chemical weapons watchdog are in Syria and were due to start their inquiry on Saturday into the suspected toxic gas attack.

What is the West planning?

The suspected poison attack by Syrian government forces that allegedly killed more than 40 people has drawn global outrage and prompted the U.S. and its allies to consider a military response.

There was no word from Putin himself, though Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow was in contact with Washington to discuss an atmosphere which he described as alarming. "The attack is the blatant violation of worldwide laws, as well as ignoring the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria", Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said according to Iranian state media.

On Thursday, US officials said that samples from victims had tested positive for chlorine and a nerve agent.

Late Friday night, the U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the U.S., United Kingdom and France jointly launched strikes targeting the Assad regime's chemical weapons capabilities after a suspected chemical attack killed dozens outside of Damascus. Nikki Haley, the USA ambassador to the United Nations, said Sunday that a new round of sanctions will target Russian companies that aid Syria's chemical weapons capabilities.

There have been calls from opposition parties and some Conservative MPs for Parliament to have a vote beforehand.

The prospect of Western military action in Syria that could lead to confrontation with Russian Federation hung over West Asia on Friday but there was no clear sign a US-led attack was imminent. "It will just take more lives and spawn the war elsewhere".

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said President Donald Trump "has not yet made a decision about possible actions in Syria".

She said U.S. officials are "continuing to assess intelligence" and are "engaged in conversations with our partners and allies". But the next morning, Trump tweeted that he "never said when an attack on Syria would take place". "Could be very soon or not so soon at all!"

The Syrian government has repeatedly denied any use of banned weapons. She also told Russian Federation if it had done its job then Assad wouldn't have these weapons.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May said the military action was believed to have been successful. But the administration appeared determined to deliver on the president's threat to punish the use of poison gas.