The strike that the US, Great Britain and France carried out on Syria on April 14 showed the nature of actions some states have been taking in the country, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Slovakia’s Pravda newspaper.
“As for allegations that the Syrian government had used chemical weapons, no evidence has been presented so far, particularly in connection with the much-talked-about April 7 incident in the town of Douma. Neither traces of chemical weapons, nor victims nor witnesses were found there,” Lavrov said, adding that “however, some people turned up who had participated in the White Helmets’ staged operation to rescue those allegedly affected by a chemical weapons attack.”
“Despite the lack of evidence, on April 14, the United States and their allies carried out a large-scale missile attack on Syria, violating the fundamental principles of international law, as well as the spirit and letter of the United Nations Charter, and jeopardizing efforts to resolve the situation in the country. This clearly shows what methods countries choose to use in Syria,” the Russian top diplomat stressed.
Lavrov pointed out that “thanks to the decisive steps taken by the Russian military and intense diplomatic efforts, a devastating blow was dealt to the ISIL [the former name of the Islamic State terror group outlawed in Russia – TASS] and other terrorist groups.” “The main thing is that the Syrian state has been preserved,” he added.
According to Lavrov, “contributing to the search for an early political solution to the issue based on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2254 and the outcome of the Sochi-held Syrian National Dialogue Congress” remains Russia’s top priority in Syria. “Together with its partners, Russia has been implementing an initiative for the return of Syrian refugees and internally displaced persons to their places of permanent residence. The next goal is to reconstruct destroyed infrastructure facilities and the country’s economy,” the Russian foreign minister noted.
In early April, a number of non-governmental organizations, including the White Helmets, reported that Syrian troops had allegedly used chemical weapons in the town of Douma on April 7. On April 14, the United States, Great Britain and France attacked several Syrian targets, firing over 100 missiles. The three countries claimed that the attack was a response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government.