Israel blamed for Syria missile strike; 14 killed


Associated Press

BEIRUT

International condemnation grew over a suspected poison gas attack in a rebel-held town near Damascus said to have been carried out by the Syrian government, while Syria and its main ally, Russia, blamed Israel for airstrikes on a Syrian air base Monday that reportedly killed 14 people, including four Iranians.

The timing of the airstrikes in central Homs province, hours after President Donald Trump said there would be “a big price to pay” for the chemical weapons attack, raised questions about whether Israel was acting alone or as a proxy for the U.S.

Israel did not comment on Monday’s missile strike.

The fast-paced developments threatened to further hike tensions between the U.S. and Russia, which has in the past warned against any U.S. military action against President Bashar Assad’s government. Iran, a key ally of Assad, condemned the airstrikes, which it said killed four Iranians, including a colonel and a member of the Revolutionary Guard’s aerospace force.

Meanwhile, The U.N. Security Council president says experts are working on a resolution on the continuing use of chemical weapons in Syria. Peruvian Ambassador Gustavo Mesa-Cuadra told reporters late Monday that council members are also consulting on an impartial investigation of the suspected poison gas attack in the rebel-held town of Douma.

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