Every response has turned wrong since the beginning of the civil war in Syria. Failure of diplomacy, failure of the UN.
It's like Washington, London and Brussels watched from afar almost glad to see me destructions in the Middle East and now they want to look like the final heroes. Just hearing from Tony Blair is infuriating!
It's been the same war since 2003. Since 2001 even. The same world war with no name. But in Europe and North America, citizens look the other way...
Just the facts now:
US-led strikes on Syria: what we know so far
US, UK and France have launched a joint military strike. Here is a summary of what has happened
- The US has launched military strikes alongside UK and French forces aimed at reducing Syrian regime’s chemical weapons facilities in the wake of last weekend’s gas attack on the Damascus suburb of Douma.
- Moments after President Donald Trump finished his address on Friday night, reports emerged of explosions in Damascus at about 2am BST. A Pentagon briefing later confirmed three sites were hit: two in Damascus and one in Homs. The sites were all regarded as linked to the storage, or testing, of chemical weapons. Syrian air defences responded to the strikes but the US said it had suffered no losses in the initial airstrikes.
- The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, has described the strikes as an “act of aggression” and said the attack would worsen the humanitarian crisis in Syria. Anatoly Antonov, the Russian ambassador to the US, said “such actions will not be left without consequences” and that Moscow was being threatened.
- Syrian state TV has shown a video of Bashar al-Assad arriving at work on Saturday morning after the coalition strikes. Syria’s air defence systems intercepted 71 out of 103 cruise missiles fired as part of the US-led strikes, according to the Russian military. Russian air defence systems did not respond to the missiles, it added.
- Trump said the attack in Douma a week ago represented “a significant escalation in a pattern of chemical weapons use” by the Assad regime, adding: “We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents.”
- The British prime minister, Theresa May, said she authorised targeted strikes to “degrade the Syrian regime’s chemical weapons capability and deter their use”. Taking a swipe at Russia, she said: “We cannot allow the use of chemical weapons to become normalised – within Syria, on the streets of the UK, or anywhere else in our world. We would have preferred an alternative path. But on this occasion there is none.”
- Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei – a staunch ally of Bashar al-Assad – has condemned the US-led airstrikes, describing the leaders of France, the UK and the US as “criminals”.
- Turkey welcomed the attack, describing the raids as an “appropriate response” to the use of chemical weapons in Douma last Saturday.
- The US defence secretary, James Mattis, said the US, UK and France had taken “decisive action” against Syria’s chemical weapon infrastructure and did not rule out further strikes. “Clearly the Assad regime did not get the message” last time, he said, referring to the response to the Ghouta chemical attack in 2017. He said the allies had “gone to great length to avoid civil and foreign casualties”.
- The UK’s Ministry of Defence said four Tornado jets flew from Cyprus as part of the strikes on Homs.
- French defence ministry sources have said France fired 12 missiles from fighter jets and frigates as part of the coordinated air and sea raids.
- The French president, Emmanuel Macron, said the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime posed an “immediate danger for the Syrian people and our collective security”.
- The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has called the airstrikes “legally questionable” and said May should have sought prior parliamentary approval.
- The Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg has issued his support for strikes. The organisation’s main political decision-making body, the North Atlantic Council, was due to hold a meeting to discuss the developments on Saturday afternoon.
- The European Union and Canada have backed the strikes. The EU commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, said those who rely on chemical warfare must be held to account.
- Hezbollah, which fights in support of Bashar al-Assad’s regime, said the US-led strikes “will not realise” America’s goals.
- The UN secretary general, António Guterres, has called for calm, urging “all member states to show restraint in these dangerous circumstances”.