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At a Saturday press briefing, Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr. said, "None of our aircraft or missiles involved in this operation were successfully engaged by Syrian air defenses, and we have no indication that Russian air-defense systems were employed. We have not denied the team any request for it to go to Douma".

A group of Russian lawmakers who met with Syrian President Bashar Assad said he considered the airstrikes an act of aggression, but also that Assad was in a "good mood", Reuters reported. American and French officials say they warned Russian Federation in advance.

Russia denounced allegations of a gas attack in Douma and said it was staged by Britain to whip up anti-Russian hysteria.

"I can guarantee that Russian Federation has not tampered with the site", Lavrov told the BBC on Monday.

Fears of a wider escalation faded after it emerged that the locations targeted by the United States, Britain and France had been confined to three sites associated with the Syrian chemical weapons programme, had caused no serious casualties and had probably not destroyed Syria's capacity to develop and deploy banned chemical substances.

"We will work calmly, methodically and professionally, using all opportunities to remove the situation from its current extremely unsafe political peak".

The U.S. -led strikes did nothing to alter the strategic balance or dent Assad's supremacy and the Western allies have said the aim was to prevent the further use of chemical weapons, not to intervene in the civil war or topple Assad.

Instead of a one-time strike he said they want more. A third target, also near Homs, contained both a chemical weapons equipment storage facility and a command post.

Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad has said his country is "fully ready" to cooperate with the OPCW mission.

The US has warned it "is locked and loaded" to strike Syria if any more chemical attacks occur.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini also said there is a clear need to push for re-launching a United Nations -led peace process. She blamed the Security Council and Russia's actions for failing in its duty to hold those who use chemical weapons to account.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley addresses the UN Security Council on Syria during a meeting of the Council at UN headquarters in NY on March 12, 2018.

The combined U.S., British and French assault appeared more intense than a similar strike Trump ordered nearly exactly a year ago against a Syrian air base in retaliation for an earlier chemical weapons attack that Washington attributed to Assad.

The military strikes in Syria Friday night were carried out by the U.S., France and Britain. There will be more.

It was unclear even whether there would be a long-term impact on Syria's capacity to develop and use chemical weapons. It also followed the purported use of chemical weapons there on April 7, which activists say killed over 40 people in the town and led to Saturday's airstrikes by the West.

US Army General Jon Mott said the current exercise will provide the basic skills to achieve professionalism for the ground forces in the field of joint operational readiness during the pre-implementation stage.

"Hopefully he's gotten the message, it was a pretty strong message", she said.


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