Syrian, Russian Officials Block Inspectors From Gas Attack Site

Investigation Into Alleged Chemical Attack In Syria Delayed Again

Syria's U.N. ambassador said a United Nations security team traveled to the Syrian town of Douma ahead of a planned visit by global chemical weapons experts on Wednesday to look into a suspected poison gas attack that sparked a USA -led retaliatory strike.

Syria's UN Ambassador Bashar Jaafari told the Security Council on Tuesday that the OPCW experts would begin their investigation once they received the all-clear from the UN security team.

The U.S. and France say they have evidence that poison gas was used in the April 7 attack in Douma, killing at least 40 people, and that Syrian President Bashar Assad's military was behind it.

Russian Federation has denied a chemical attack took place at all, saying it was faked.

After the Eastern Ghouta attack, the US and Russian Federation joined hands to take Syria's chemical weapons out of the country.

Mrs May said it was in the UK's national interest to act - insisting that "we have not done this because President Trump asked us to but because it was the right thing to do". The Syrian outlet also reported another, separate airstrike on the Dumayr air base, in a suburb of the capital, Damascus.

Addressing the council, US Ambassador Nikki Haley said the United States was confident that the military strikes had crippled Syria's chemical weapons program.

U.S. President Donald Trump is still willing to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in spite of increasing tensions between the United States and Russia, White House Spokesperson, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said on Tuesday.

The OPCW team will seek evidence from soil samples, interviews with witnesses, blood, urine or tissue samples from victims and weapon parts. Another said they had been met by protesters demanding aid, and gunfire was heard. Syria and its allies blamed Israel for that attack.

Earlier Monday, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said the inspectors could not go to the site because they needed approval from the United Nations.

However, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said the United Nations has "provided the necessary clearances for the OPCW team to go about its work in Douma".

Syrian media reported another missile attack early Thursday in Homs province, but later said it was a false alarm and not an outside attack that triggered air defense systems.

USA ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks during a U.N. Security Council meeting on April 10, 2018.

Administration officials, noting the US has imposed previous sanctions on Russian Federation over its cyber activity during the 2016 presidential election, insisted a decision hasn't been made on more penalties over chemical weapons.

On CBS's "Face the Nation", Haley said the Treasury Department will announce the new sanctions and insisted the U.S. has sent "a strong message" about the use of chemical weapons.

As CBS News correspondent Seth Doane reports, rebel forces had held Douma nearly since the start of the war in Syria, now more than seven years old, and the government's fight to take it back was fierce.

Russian President Vladimir Putin told German Chancellor Angela Merkel that the Western strikes had violated global law and set back the peace process, the Kremlin said. Defence secretary Gavin Wiliamson told BBC Radio 4: "Our service personnel have played an important role in terms of degrading the ability of the Syrian regime to use chemical weapons in the future, but also it sends a clear message to the Syrian regime that they can not continue to use chemical weapons with impunity".

"I think that was a missed opportunity because for all of our handwringing and justified concern about President Trump's temperament and how he may respond in a crisis situation he could have played those concerns to our advantage", Rice said.

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