US, Britain, France launch air strikes in Syria against use of chemical weapons: 10 developments

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New Delhi | Updated: April 14, 2018 2:37:45 PM

According to US defence officials, aircraft including B-1 bombers and ships were used in the attack. Locals in Damascus said that they heard sounds of multiple explosions while Donald Trump was making his address.

Syria, Syria attack, Syria chemical attack, United States, Syria chemical weapon, Donald Trump, Samascus, Britain, FranceThis photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows anti-aircraft fire in the sky after US-led airstrikes targeting different parts of Damascus (Source: AP)

The United States, Britain and France have launched air strikes in Syria against President Bashar al-Assad administration for using a chemical attack against citizens. US President Donald Trump said that he ordered to launch strikes on targets that are associated with chemical weapon capabilities of Assad. Trump said that he was prepared to sustain the response until Assad’s government stopped its use of chemical weapons. The Associated Press reported that after the attack, people in Syria took to the streets and held demonstrations against the three world powers. Syria’s allies Russia and Iran have also denounced this with Russian President saying that Moscow will call an emergency session of the UN Council.

Here are top 10 developments:

1. Pentagon said the last night attacks targeted the heart of Assad’s programs to develop and produce chemical weapons. Officials said that strikes targeted three facilities including a scientific research facility around Damascus, a chemical weapons storage facility around Homs. The Syrian Observatory reported that the Syrian Army’s 4th Division and Republican Guard were among the targets of the air strikes.

2. According to US defence officials, aircraft including B-1 bombers and ships were used in the attack. Locals in Damascus said that they heard sounds of multiple explosions while Donald Trump was making his address.

3. US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis described the attack limited assault and said that there were no reports of losses to the US. He said that Friday’s strike was completed and was designed as a one-night operation. “I believe it has sent a very strong message to dissuade him to deter him from doing it again,” he said.

Syria, Syria chemical attack, United States, chemical weapon A plane preparing to take off as part of the joint airstrike operation by the British, French and US militaries in Syria, is seen in this picture obtained on April 14, 2018 via social media. (Source: REUTERS)

4. Syrian state television reported that country’s air defenses responded to the attack. It even aired a video of the missile being fired during the night. However, it is not clear if they hit anything.

5. Russia has said that it will call an emergency session of the UN Council over three world powers’ decision to launch air strikes in war-torn nation.

6. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei would achieve not any gains. “Attacking Syria is a crime. US President (Donald Trump), UK Prime Minister (Theresa May) and French President (Emmanuel Macron) are criminals,” Khamenei said.

7. This is for the second time America has attacked Syria to punish the Assad government after it was accused of using weapons against its own citizens. In April last year, Washington had fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase against the use of chemical weapon by the Assad government that killed over 100 people.

Syria, Syria chemical weson, chemical attack, United StatesA missile is seen crossing over Damascus, Syria April 14, 2018. (Source: REUTERS)

8. Germany has refused to join the US to punish Assad regime. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has, however, called the use of chemical weapons unacceptable.

9. British Prime Minister Theresa May said that Syria had left the allies no choice. She said that this persistent pattern of behaviour must be stopped. She said that Syria air strikes send ‘clear message’ against use of chemical weapons. “We can’t allow the erosion of the international norm that prevents the use of these weapons,” she said in her remark.

10. Macron also issued a statement saying the red line set by France in May 2017 has been crossed. The President said he has ordered the French forces to intervene as part of an international operation with the US and target the chemical arsenal of the Syrian regime.

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