Trump on Syria strikes: 'Mission Accomplished!'

By AFP
Published: April 14, 2018
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Donald Trump. PHOTO: REUTERS

Donald Trump. PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON DC: President Donald Trump on Saturday praised the pre-dawn strikes against Syria’s regime carried out jointly by the US, Britain and France, saying they “could not have had a better result.”

Western officials said a barrage of cruise and air-to-land missiles hit what they said were sites linked to chemical weapons development, in retaliation after a suspected toxic gas attack a week ago on the rebel-held town of Douma, in the Damascus suburbs.

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“A perfectly executed strike last night. Thank you to France and the United Kingdom for their wisdom and the power of their fine Military,” Trump tweeted.

“Could not have had a better result. Mission Accomplished!”

Branding last week’s alleged chemical attack the “crimes of a monster,” Trump announced the military action against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime in a White House address late Friday, defying fierce warnings from Damascus ally Russia.

A journalist films the wreckage of a building described as part of the Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC) compound in the Barzeh district, north of Damascus, during a press tour organised by the Syrian information ministry, on April 14, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

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US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis called the strikes a “one-time shot” with no additional military action planned for now.

A Syrian soldier spray water on the wreckage of a building described as part of the Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC) compound in the Barzeh district, north of Damascus, during a press tour organised by the Syrian information ministry, on April 14, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

In 2003, then US president George W Bush announced the end of major combat operations in Iraq aboard a US aircraft carrier returning from the Gulf — with a banner that read “Mission Accomplished” behind him — a declaration that proved premature.

In this image released by the US Department of Defence the guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey fires a Tomahawk land attack missile on April 14, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

The German Reaction 

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Saturday the air strikes against the Syrian regime were “necessary and appropriate” after the suspected chemical weapons attacks that killed dozens in Douma.

“We support the fact that our US, British and French allies … assumed their responsibilities. The military intervention was necessary and appropriate,” Merkel said in a statement.

A protester reacts to a police officer as she demonstrates against UK involvement in any military escalation in Syria on Whitehall in London, Britain April 13, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS

“Everything leads us to believe that (Assad) bears responsibility” for the Douma attack, Merkel said.

The chancellor on Thursday had ruled out Germany joining any military action against Syria.

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On Saturday she said it appeared likely that the Syrian regime “had used chemical weapons against its own people on several occasions in the past”.

Merkel added: “A century after the end of World War I… we must fight against the erosion of the (international) convention on chemical weapons”.

“Germany will undertake, in a determined way, diplomatic efforts to support this,” Merkel said.

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