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Assad allies respond to US-led Syria airstrikes, Russia calls for UN emergency meeting Open in fullscreen

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Assad allies respond to US-led Syria airstrikes, Russia calls for UN emergency meeting

Syrian regime allies have held rallies in Damascus [AFP]

Date of publication: 14 April, 2018

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Syrian regime allies Iran, Russia and others have slammed US, French and UK air strikes on suspected chemical facilities in Syria.
Syria's regime and its allies attacked the US, UK and France after the NATO allies launched a series of airstrikes on chemical processing facilities inside Syria, Friday night.

Scores of missiles hit three military positions in Homs province and Damascus overnight, almost a week after a chemical attack - blamed on the regime - on an opposition enclave, killing at least 40 people.

Syria's national news agency SANA slammed the strikes as a "flagrant violation of the international law" and "aggression".

"Syria calls on the international community to strongly condemn this aggression which will lead to nothing, but to ignite tensions in the world and to pose threat to the international peace and security as a whole," the agency reported.

It claimed the strikes will not stop the Syrian regime's war against the opposition.

SANA claimed the attacks were timed at "impeding the work" of chemical watchdog scientists who arrived in the Syrian capital to investigate the massacre in Douma.

Syrian regime media claimed that most of the missiles fired by the Western allies were downed and "scientific" facilities were hit in the strikes, with three civilians injured.

Russia

Russia, a key ally of Bashar al-Assad, has called for an emergency UN Security Council meeting in response to the strikes.

"Russia is calling an emergency session of the UN Security Council to discuss the aggressive actions of the US and its allies," Moscow said in a statement.
It also condemned the strikes in Syria, where Moscow has been backing Bashar al-Assad since 2015.

"Russia severely condemns the attack on Syria where Russian military are helping the lawful government in the fight with terrorism," the Kremlin said in a statement, according to AFP.

The strikes were careful to avoid areas where there is a strong Russian military presence and Moscow said it did not activate air defences in Syria.

"Russian air defence systems located on Syrian territory have not been used to counter the missile strikes," the defence ministry said.

Russia's European ally Belarus also attacked the strikes.

"Belarus condemns the US-British-French tripartite aggression on Syria and urges on not using force against a sovereign state," a statement on SANA read.

Iran

Agencies contributed to this story.

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