Trump advisers: US seeks to fight IS and oust Syria's Assad

Iranian General Mohammad Bagheri seen in 2016 and Russian General Valery Gerasimov

Haley's words, however, came a day after she said Washington was ready to take additional action after a USA cruise missile attack on a Syrian air base in Homs.

And on Saturday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, in a statement carried by state television, called for the formation of an worldwide fact-finding committee that "must not be headed by Americans".

"The strike was a message to Bashar al-Assad that your multiple violations of your agreements at the United Nations, your agreements under the chemical weapons charter back in 2013 - that those would not go without a response in the future".

Earlier this week, media reports emerged saying Tillerson will present a memorandum of G7 members demanding that Russian Federation abandon its support for Assad's government in return for restoring Moscow's membership in the group.

Though Russia has denied all the reports of the chemical attack as a "factual misinformation" and claimed that the gas might have leaked from the rebels' own chemical weapons depot, its military has, at the same time, announced that it would bolster and increase the effectiveness of Assad's air defenses.

Meanwhile, the White House refuted reports that Russian Federation had prior information about the use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime last week.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrived in Moscow Tuesday to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Mevlut Cavusoglu said Saturday that the USA intervention was only "cosmetic" unless it removes Assad from power.

"It's important that we keep our priorities straight", said Tillerson.

The U.S. says the strike was in response to a nerve gas attack on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun last week, which has been widely blamed on government forces. The State Department said last week a meeting had not been confirmed with Putin, who met with Tillerson when the Texan headed Exxon Mobil.

"There is continuing recklessness with the [Trump] administration and the United States military prodding Russian Federation and sort of assuming they will not get a reaction, but the problem is always there that something will happen and it will escalate and escalate", Black said.

Cavusoglu said after the transitional government takes over, it will be followed with elections in which Syrians in the country and overseas can vote.

Tillerson's comments were far more critical of the Russian government than any public statements by President Trump, who has been an increasingly lonely voice for getting along better with Russia.

The protesters held banners and chanted anti-American slogans Saturday such as "Death to America" and "Death to Israel".

They refer to all Syrian opposition groups as "terrorists".

The United States is vowing to keep up the pressure on Syria after the intense nighttime wave of missile strikes from us ships, despite the prospect of escalating Russian ill will that could further inflame one of the world's most vexing conflicts.

University student Ashraf Fadel said he came to denounce "the unjust American aggression against Syria".

"It reminds me of the events in 2003 when USA envoys to the Security Council were demonstrating what they said were chemical weapons found in Iraq", Putin told reporters. The attack occurred in the Shuaib al-Zeker area, near where USA -backed Syrian fighters have been battling IS under the cover of coalition airstrikes.

The United States fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles from warships in the Mediterranean at the Shayrat airfield, dealing heavy damage to the base.

Trump spoke by telephone Friday with Saudi Arabia's King Salman, who reaffirmed strong support for the military strike and thanked the USA president for his "courageous" action, according to statements issued Saturday by the White House and the official Saudi Press Agency.

The G-7 meeting comes as the United States is sending a Navy carrier strike group toward the Korean Peninsula to provide a physical presence following North Korea's persistent ballistic missile tests.

The kingdom is among the most vehement opponents of Assad and supports Sunni rebel groups fighting to oust him.

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