Suspected chemical attack "fabrication", says Assad

Suspected chemical attack

And despite a 2013 agreement, in which the Assad administration said it would give up its chemical weapons, USA officials now believe that the Syrian government has re-established its use of the weapons.

Though Tillerson is working to persuade Moscow to drop support for Assad - warning during a G7 meeting earlier this week in Italy that Russian Federation risks becoming irrelevant in the Middle East for it - Lavrov told the State Department chief that he wants to know Trump's real intentions. "But it doesn't have to be this way".

Russian Federation remains furious, and the us and Russian Federation have been confronting each other over it both at the United Nations and in meetings Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had with both Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Putin in Russian Federation on Wednesday.

Mr. Putin has pursued an overarching geopolitical goal throughout his long tenure as either Russia's President or Prime Minister: to see his country treated with the same respect the Soviet Union received during the Cold War, when it was acknowledged as an indispensable player on the worldwide stage.

Bassam Rifai, a spokesperson for the Syrian American Council (SAC), which advocates for "freedom and democracy in Syria", told MEE from the United Nations that the VIPS report "is echoing the propaganda that the Russians have put out, that Assad is trying to fight terrorism". He said working groups would be established to improve US-Russian ties and identify problems. In his Wednesday interview with AFP, Assad similarly said his nation would allow only an "impartial" investigation.

Trump had frequently called during the 2016 U.S. presidential election campaign for warmer ties with Putin, despite criticism from lawmakers in his own Republican Party. As you know, Secretary of State Tillerson is in Moscow.

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"Right now we're not getting along with Russian Federation at all", Trump said flatly during a White House news conference.

Diplomats said that Russian Federation has put forward a rival draft resolution that expresses concern at last week's gas attack and condemns the United States strike on Syria.

"We don't want a new Cold War", he said standing next to Trump.

The attack prompted President Donald Trump, who had in the past publicly opposed intervention in Syria, to launch a retaliatory missile strike against the Syrian air base where aircraft that delivered the chemical weapons are believed to have taken off.

The Trump administration says it is spending a disproportionate share on defense compared with its 27 partners, and that it expects action by the time Trump meets with other alliance leaders on May 25.

During remarks alongside Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Tillerson said that he and Putin "frankly discussed the current state of U.S. -Russia relations".

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The US did not know prior to the attack it was going to happen, the official emphasized.

Mr Lavrov blasted United States claims that it has "irrefutable evidence" of election interference.

Trump and others have indeed threatened similar action. He said President Bashar al-Assad's government was responsible.

But Moscow appeared unready to budge on the primary goal of Tillerson's mission - persuading Russian Federation to help remove Assad from power.

In the days since the attacks, U.S.

More than 80 people were killed in what the USA has described as a nerve gas attack that Assad's forces undoubtedly carried out.

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