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Canada supports 'limited and focused' United States military action against Syria, Trudeau says

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Since a year ago, opposition forces have suffered a series of defeats, and many in rebel-held territory expressed hope that United States strikes could reverse the situation.

"Canada will continue to support diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis in Syria".

April 5, 2017: Trump says Assad's government has "crossed a lot of lines" with the suspected chemical attack in Syria.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called the U.S. act "thoughtless" and questioned U.S. commitment to combatting terrorism, saying that while previous U.S. airstrikes "were explained with the objective of combatting terrorism, then now we see an open act of aggression against sovereign Syria".

In the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhun, site of an alleged chemical weapons attack, residents still mourning their dead on Friday welcomed U.S. strikes as a way to pressure Damascus.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev complained on Friday that USA cruise missile strikes on a Syrian airbase were one step away from clashing with the Russian military.

If confirmed, Khan Sheikhun would be the second deadliest chemical attack in the Syrian war, after a 2013 attack believed to have killed hundreds of people in Eastern Ghouta near Damascus. "The global community was shocked by the tragedy that left many young children among the victims", Abe told reporters.

Thursday morning's attack is not the first time the Syrian government was threatened with military action. Chlorine gas, though not as toxic as nerve agents, can be classified as a chemical weapon depending on its use.

The US missile strikes were reportedly conducted on the same base from where the chemical attack was launched on civilians in Syria's Idlib.

US Defence Secretary James Mattis asked for Britain's view on whether Bashar al-Assad's regime was responsible for a chemical attack in Syria before Washington launched a missile attack on a Syrian airbase, Britain's defense minister said on Friday.

On Thursday night, US President Donald Trump ordered a strike in an area controlled by Syrian President Bashar Assad. "We can not stand by in silence as dictators murder children with chemical weapons", said Reps. "The retribution has been proportionate and it has been swift", he told reporters in Sydney.

If Assad decides to defy us, we will be forced into further action against his regime without any idea of what would replace it. Trump even appeared to find support in his actions from Hillary Clinton, who earlier tonight urged the president to "take out [Assad's] airfields and prevent him from being able to use them to bomb innocent people". Turnbull called on Russian Federation to do more to ensure peace in Syria.

The Pentagon said the Russian military, which is supporting the Syrian government, had been informed ahead of the U.S. attack.

The Kremlin said Vladimir Putin believes the action would damage ties between Moscow and Washington and are a "serious obstacle" to the creation of an worldwide coalition to fight terrorism.

He said Thursday night: "It is in the vital national security interest of the United States to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons".

USA officials portrayed the strikes as an appropriate, measured response and said they did not signal a broader shift in the Trump administration's approach to the Syrian conflict.

"I hope that this United States operation will contribute to securing peace".

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