Russian Federation says Israeli war planes attacked Syrian regime air base

AP quoted SANA saying it was "likely to be an American aggression" though USA officials told the organization no American military action had been taken.

In November, Russia used its veto power at the council to block the renewal of a previous UN-led probe that found the Syrian air force had dropped sarin on the town of Khan Sheikhun in April a year ago.

But Israeli officials said the Tiyas, or T-4, air base was being used by troops from Iran and that Israel would not accept such a presence in Syria by its arch foe.

Although the agency said it was likely "an American aggression", US officials said the United States had not launched any airstrikes on Syria.

The politician said the Syrian government was expecting a limited US strike, similar to the one on Shayrat air base past year, which came after an alleged chemical attack on a rebel-held town in northern Syria that killed dozens of people.

Damascus denied its forces had launched any chemical assault and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said such allegations were false and a provocation.

"We are on the edge of a risky precipice", she said.

But France's Permanent Representative Francois Delattre countered that only the Syrian government and its allies had the capability to develop the chemical and said that there was no doubt about who carried out the attacks.

Al-Manar TV station of Lebanon's Iran-backed Hezbollah group, which is fighting in Syria alongside the government forces, described the attack as an "Israeli aggression".

"We express our readiness, after the liberation of Douma from militants, to immediately send Russian specialists in radiological, chemical and biological protection for the collection of data, that will confirm the fabricated character of these statements", Yevtushenko said.

Airstrikes on a major air base in central Syria on early Monday were allegedly carried out by Israeli jets, according to Russia's Defense Ministry.

Bakkar, the opposition activist, said several bombs laced with chemicals landed in Douma Saturday night.

More news: United States and North Korea 'holding secret talks' ahead of meeting

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the strike on the T-4 base was a risky development. Amos Yadlin, a former Israeli fighter pilot and ex-head of Israeli military intelligence, stopped short of saying Israel was responsible for the airstrike.

Syria's White Helmets, who act as first responders in rebel-held areas of Syria, said the Douma attack took place late on Saturday using "poisonous chlorine gas".

Trump has not left out anyone in the blame game against the president of Syria. "Probably after the fact", Trump said.

Reports said that Trump's comment has come a year and a day after the United States fired cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase in retaliation for a deadly sarin gas attack in 2017.

The agency said the bombing killed some people and injured others, but did not give an exact toll.

Saturday's suspected poison gas attack on the besieged town of Douma came nearly exactly a year after the US missile attack prompted by the Khan Sheikhoun deaths.

Earlier, Syrian state TV said on Monday the United States was suspected of striking an air base hours after US President Donald Trump warned of a "big price to pay" as aid groups said dozens of people were killed by poison gas in a rebel-held town.

Those reports could not be independently verified because of a government blockade around the town.

Syria's state-run news agency said the military's air defences confronted a missile attack on air base in central Syria and shot down eight missiles.

In his tweets Sunday, Trump called Assad an "animal" and delivered a rare personal criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin for supporting him.

Global bodies led by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) were trying to establish exactly what happened in Douma, a rebel-held town in the eastern Ghouta district.

The UN Security Council is set to meet in an emergency session today to discuss the poison gas attack.

  • Adam Floyd