Russian Federation says 'immediate priority is to avert the danger of war'

Russian Federation says 'immediate priority is to avert the danger of war'

Russian Federation on Saturday called for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council as Moscow said it would consider supplying S-300 missile systems to Syria following USA -led strikes.

USA ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks during a U.N. Security Council meeting on April 10, 2018.

Mr Yakovenko also accused the United Kingdom of deliberately classifying documents to obfuscate investigations and denied Russian Federation had ever produced Novichok, the deadly nerve agent that Britain has named as the source, which has been backed by the OPCW as one of "high purity".

With punitive United States military action seemingly imminent, Russian Federation scrambled to deflect blame from Syria's Bashar al-Assad and, according to a monitor group, regime forces evacuated key defense buildings in Damascus.

The draft law on Russia's measures in response to USA sanctions contains a ban on the imports of American agricultural products, as well as alcohol and tobacco products, First Vice-Speaker of the State Duma Ivan Melnikov said. The dispute over Syria was the latest wedge between the West and Russian Federation, which has been embroiled in conflicts on multiple fronts with western governments.

Asked whether the United States was waiting for the OPCW's report before it makes a decision on Syria, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said, "We believe we know who is responsible for this".

Russian Federation responded angrily to a US -led strike against Syria on Friday, warning of unspecified "consequences" that stoked fears the conflict could escalate.

"The raising of a regime flag over a building in the town of Douma signified control over this town and consequently over Eastern Ghouta as a whole", Major General Yury Yevtushenko was quoted as saying Thursday by the Interfax news agency.

Trump's spokeswoman dismissed this idea, and pointedly refused to acknowledge that concern about the risks of a direct confrontation with Russian Federation would hold the USA military back.

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Guterres said "the Cold War is back - with a vengeance but with a difference", because safeguards that managed the risk of escalation in the past "no longer seem to be present".

Earlier on Saturday, United States President Donald Trump Trump addressed the nation announcing military strikes in Syria in cooperation with France and Great Britain aimed at deterring further chemical attacks, with over 100 missiles targeting various facilities in Syria.

"The current escalation of the situation around Syria has a devastating impact on the whole system of global relations", he added. You shouldn't be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and enjoys it! Stop the arms race?

The sanctions list targets a number of Russian tycoons, including Oleg Deripaska, a billionaire who once had close ties to Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort and Kirill Shamalov, an energy executive who married Putin's daughter.

May recalled ministers from their Easter holiday to debate action over what she has cast as a barbaric poison gas attack by Syrian government forces on civilians in the formerly rebel-controlled town of Douma, just east of the capital Damascus.

It comes after UK Prime Minister Theresa May spoke with President Trump and the pair agreed "the Assad regime had established a pattern of risky behaviour in relation to the use of chemical weapons".

The allied operation comes a year after a USA missile strike that Trump said was meant to deter Assad from further use of chemical weapons.

The OPCW said it would "shortly" deploy a fact-finding team to Douma for an investigation, but USA officials said they were working from their own information and would not necessarily hold back.

Asked about the risks of US military retaliation, Mattis cited two concerns, starting with avoiding civilian casualties.

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