Syria attack will be met forcefully


US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley speaks during the United Nations Security Council meeting on threats to worldwide peace and security and the situation in the Middle East April 9, 2018 in NY.

USA officials are assessing whether Syrian President Bashar Assad's government was behind Saturday's suspected chemical weapons attack on rebel-held Douma, east of Damascus.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Monday that the President still wants to pull United States troops from Syria once ISIS is defeated there and rejected the notion that his comments about a future withdrawal may have emboldened the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Following last year's use of the internationally-banned sarin nerve agent in the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun, the Trump administration struck Syria's military with dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles.

Trump's comments slightly softened his earlier tweets on April 8 where he directly blamed Russia, Syria and Iran for the alleged chemical attack. The airstrikes reportedly killed 14 people, including Iranians, at a military airport near the city of Homs.

But the USA has said that Russian Federation, with its support for the Syrian government, "ultimately bears responsibility" for the alleged attacks.

At least 42 people were killed in a chemical attack in Syria on Saturday.

Senators said it was improbable that a new Authorization for Use of Military Force could be completed before Trump might take immediate action against Syria but that if it turns into a lengthy conflict a new authorization might be needed to approve the deployment.

Israeli Sniper Targets, Kills Journalist in "PRESS" Vest
More Palestinians were killed along the Gaza-Israeli border as demonstrators returned for the second consecutive Friday. Gaza's economy has been devastated by years of Israeli military attacks and a joint Israeli-Egyptian blockade.

Reports suggested more than 500 people, mostly women and children, were brought to medical centres with difficulty breathing, foaming at the mouth, and burning sensations in the eyes. At the same time he wants to make sure Assad is deterred from chemical weapons attacks on innocent civilians. The Assad regime has denied responsibility, but many believe it is behind the deadly strike.

Fielding questions at the White House, Trump press secretary Sarah Sanders said it would be "outrageous" to say that Trump's recent announcement that he intends to remove all USA forces from Syria in the coming months had emboldened Assad.

"I think the notion that we would leave Syria is - was a mistake, because we haven't finished destroying ISIS, and because people like Iran and Russian Federation see a vacuum created when the United States leaves into which they will run", he told CNN.

Iran is one of Assad's strongest backers and has sent thousands of troops and allied militiamen to support his forces. 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.

The Syrian regime and its ally Russian Federation have rejected claims of a chemical attack, with President Vladimir Putin warning against any "provocation and speculation on this matter".

But Iran's presence in Syria changed that tacit status quo, and Israel has carried out numerous strikes on the country in recent years. "This is about humanity. and it can't be allowed to happen".

"We need to work with the United Nations and hold President Assad accountable for his war crimes", Cardin said. We can not continue to stand by and passively watch the slaughter of innocents, especially when we bear no small responsibility for this brutal civil war.

Trump on Tuesday cancelled plans to travel to South America later this week, choosing to stay in the United States to manage the response to the events in Syria.