US national security adviser John Bolton has warned that the US, France and United Kingdom will launch a "much stronger" response to any chemical weapons attack in Syria, as the US bolsters its regional military presence in preparation. "We are on the eve of a considerable humanitarian and security catastrophe", Le Drian said.
Previously, the Russian Ministry of Defense had accused the US government of planning a new round of airstrikes on Syria, using the false-flag attack allegedly being coordinated by terrorist groups on the ground in Syria as a pretext and justification.
Underlining that dozens of Russian and regime airstrikes hit three hospitals, two centers of White Helmet rescue workers and an ambulance over the weekend, Alistair Burt said: "The medical facilities and aid workers must be protected". Assad "has been warned", Mattis said. "The first time around he lost 17% of his pointy-nosed air force airplanes. We will see them finding a secure place on the border and create their own living areas if the operation starts".
Mattis declined to confirm whether he has been in consultations with the United Kingdom or France on any military response.
An estimated 3 million people live in Idlib - the last major stronghold of active opposition to President Bashar al-Assad. "It must not be transformed into a bloodbath". The United States and Russian Federation keep blaming each other. "No matter what type of weapons or methods are used, the United States strongly opposes any escalation of violence in Idlib".
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The Turkish president also criticized Assad's attempt of trying to legitimize an attack as counter-terrorism efforts. "I make a clear appeal to all parties directly and indirectly involved - and in particular the three guarantors of the de-escalation zone, namely Iran, Russia and Turkey: Spare no effort to find solutions that protect civilians". Such a response is especially likely due to the high visibility of the Idlib situation and Washington's multiple warnings about chemical weapons use.
Iran, Russia and Turkey previous year set up the Astana process, a negotiating track to end Syria's war that has largely eclipsed the UN-led peace process.
"There needs to be ways of dealing with this problem that don't turn the next few months in Idlib into the worst humanitarian catastrophe with the biggest loss of life in the 21st century", Mark Lowcock told reporters in Geneva.
"Russia has requested an open session of the UN Security Council, bearing in mind the interest demonstrated by a number of Security Council members to the results of the Russia-Iran-Turkey summit". "They still have the power to match their words of peace with deeds by working in Geneva to achieve a political transition in Syria".