Mattis says no USA losses in Syria strikes

Mattis says no USA losses in Syria strikes

At the Pentagon, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said the strike was "harder" on the Syrian regime than the 2017 strike and targeted "Syrian chemical weapons infrastructure".

Mattis told Pentago reporters that the action was necessary because Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had not been deterred from using chemical weapons against rebel military forces seeking to overthrow him and civilian populations in areas controlled by the insurgents. In conducting these strikes, we have gone to great lengths to avoid civilian and foreign casualties.

"Trump calls the two countries those "most responsible for supporting, equipping and financing the criminal Assad regime". Gen. Dunford said the USA used deconfliction lines to tell Russian Federation that they were using the airspace involved in the attack, but gave them no indication what was being hit.

The strikes that hit early Saturday in Syria came hours before inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons were set to arrive to inspect the sight of the apparent attack.

Through these strikes we wanted to ensure that Syria is not capable of conducting any research related to nuclear use in future, said Mattis.

The third target, which was also near Homs, contained both a chemical weapons equipment storage facility and a command post. "Never said when an attack on Syria would take place", he tweeted. "At the same time, we keep our foot on the neck of ISIS until we suffocate it", he said referring to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.

But in anticipation of any pushback from Syria or Russia, Dunford said the USA commander in Syria has changed the force protection levels for the 2,000 US troops there fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in case of retaliation. "They can only say they found evidence or did not".




Asked about the risks of U.S. military retaliation, Mattis cited two concerns, starting with avoiding civilian casualties.

Defense Department officials said that will include trying to get more commitments from allies of help immediately after any strikes.

Trump says that closing Saturday, Syrian President Bashar Assad deployed chemical weapons in what was a "necessary escalation in a pattern of chemical weapons use by that very frightful regime".

British Prime Minister Theresa May said in London that the West had tried "every possible" diplomatic means to stop Assad from using chemical weapons.

Despite concerns of retaliation, Mattis said Syrian surface to air missiles were used, but did not say whether they were destroyed, and said more details would be available in the coming day. By Thursday afternoon, NBC News reported the USA had confirmed the presence of a nerve agent and chlorine gas in blood and urine samples of the attack victims. The United States and allies struck Syria Friday night and Russian Federation has promised that the attack will come with consequences.

Trump announced the airstrikes on Syria around 9 p.m. ET from the White House.

He said under Article 2 of the US constitution, the US President has all the powers and rights to protect US interests and nation security.

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