Comment from the Press Service of the President of Russia
The President of Russia regards the US airstrikes on Syria as an act of aggression against a sovereign state delivered in violation of international law under a far-fetched pretext. The Syrian Army has no chemical weapons. The fact of the destruction of all Syrian chemical weapons’ stockpiles has been recorded and verified by the OPCW, a specialised UN body. Vladimir Putin believes that complete disregard for factual information about the use by terrorists of chemical weapons drastically aggravates the situation.
This move by Washington [the US airstrike on an air base in Syria] has dealt a serious blow to Russian-US relations, which are already in a poor state. Most importantly, this move will not bring us closer to the ultimate goal of combatting international terrorism but will instead create a major obstacle to the establishment of an international counterterrorist coalition and to effective struggle against this global evil, something that US President Donald Trump declared as one of his main goals during his election campaign.
Vladimir Putin regards the US strikes on Syria as an attempt to draw public attention away from the numerous civilian casualties in Iraq.
On Friday, the United States launched Tomahawk cruise missiles at an air base in Homs Province in western Syria.
Meeting with permanent members of Security Council
Vladimir Putin held a meeting with permanent members of the Security Council.
There was a detailed discussion of the situation in Syria in the wake of the US missile strikes. Washington’s actions were again qualified as aggression and a violation of international law.
The meeting participants expressed deep concern about the inevitable negative consequences of this aggressive act on the common efforts to combat terrorism.
The parties said it is highly regrettable that the bilateral Russian-US relations were damaged as a result of the strikes on the Syrian air base.
The meeting also considered various issues related to the Russian Aerospace Forces’ continuing operation to support counterterrorism operations by the Syrian armed forces.
The participants also touched on the current issues on the domestic socioeconomic agenda.
Attending the meeting were Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin, Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Anton Vaino, Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev, Director of the Federal Security Service Alexander Bortnikov, Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service Sergei Naryshkin and Special Presidential Representative for Environmental Protection, Ecology and Transport Sergei Ivanov.
Source President of Russia Kremlin Moscow