Kremlin says no positive shift yet on Russia-US ties

Posted April 14, 2017

The Apr. 4 gas poisoning in the town of Khan Sheikhoun prompted the U.S.to launch a cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base in response - its first direct assault on the Assad government in the six-year-old conflict.

Assad also said Syria's military had given up all chemical weapons, AFP said on its Twitter account, quoting remarks in an interview with the Syrian president. "They fabricated the whole story in order to have a pretext for the attack", added Assad, who has been in power for 17 years.

Syria has denied any use of chemical weapons and Moscow said the deaths were the result of a conventional strike hitting a rebel arms depot containing "toxic substances".

Denying any involvement whatsoever, the Syrian leader said: "A hundred percent for us, it's fabrication".

The world's chemical weapons watchdog said Thursday that allegations a chemical attack took place in Khan Sheikhun were "credible".

"You have a lot of fake videos now", he said.

"We don't know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhun". The United States and other Western governments blame Assad's regime.

Western allies say there is compelling evidence that the Syrian government was behind what happened in Khan Sheikhoun.

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MOSCOW (AP) - President Vladimir Putin's meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson hasn't produced any positive shift yet in Russia-U.S. relations, the Kremlin said Thursday.

"It's deplorable, and we regret what is going on, but we can do little except asking to back accusations with facts", Lavrov said.

Russian Federation accused the U.S. of breaking worldwide law with the attack against the Syrian regime, a key ally that Moscow has supported with air strikes since 2015.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday, April 12, said the relations between the US and Russian Federation were "at a low point" and the two countries remained divided on a range of issues, including Syria.

Russia's hopes for a thaw in Russia-U.S. ties following Trump's election have been shattered by the congressional investigation into alleged ties between Trump's campaign associates and Russian Federation.

Looking at the resolution's supporters sitting around the horseshoe-shaped table in the Security Council, he said: "You are afraid of an impartial investigation" that the Syrian government was being blamed for chemical weapons attacks carried out by extremists.

The anonymous official reportedly told the American news channel that the United States intelligence community had intercepted communications "featuring Syrian military and chemical experts talking about preparations for the sarin attack in Idlib last week".