Syria needs both military and political de-escalation - UN Syria envoy

Turkey-Russia relations too strong to be broken by Macron, FM says

Russia Told US What To Avoid Bombing In Syrian Airstrikes

Lavrov criticised the US-led missile strikes on Syria last week as they undermined the Geneva talks for the Syrian settlement under the auspices of the United Nations at a time when Russia, Turkey and Iran very closely approached the resumption of the Geneva process.

He also said that he was convinced Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump would not allow an armed confrontation between their two countries, RIA reported.

"We no longer have such moral obligations", Lavrov said.

Chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana White told reporters Thursday that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad "must know the world will not tolerate the use of chemical weapons under any circumstances".

Lavrov said that Trump indicated he could make a reciprocal trip to Russian Federation if Putin was able to accept his invitation to the White House.

News agencies have cited Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying Trump repeatedly invited Putin during their phone call on March 20.

Lavrov indicated that President Vladimir Putin is ready for such a visit if the invitation is appropriately done with the specifics being outlined.

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"We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences", Russia Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov wrote in a statement.

Russian officials say the tripartite Western attacks hit Syria right at the moment the country had a chance to have a peaceful future.

During the interview, Lavrov also said Moscow welcomed an expected summit between Trump and Kim Jong Un, the leader of nuclear-armed North Korea. "They are leaders, after all, elected by their people and responsible for their peace", he said. That prompted the US, Britain and France to launch a missile strike on Syria.

Valentina Matvienko, the speaker of Russia's upper house of parliament said: "Russia's response to the sanctions, our so-called counter-sanctions, will be precise, painful, and without question sensitive for exactly those countries that imposed them (the sanctions) on Russian Federation".

To repel the US-led attack, Syria deployed Soviet-made surface-to-air missile systems, including S-125 (NATO reporting name: SA-3 Goa), S-200 (SA-5 Gammon), 2K12 Kub (SA-6 Gainful) and Buk, the Russian Defense Ministry confirmed a while later.

Syrian forces used Soviet-era air defense systems and fired 112 surface-to-air missiles to repel the USA -led strikes, destroying 71 out of the 103 missiles launched by the Western coalition last week, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.

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