U.S. air strikes are an act of aggression: Assad

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At the meeting, the fifth in a week on chemical weapons in Syria, Russia and its supporters again clashed with the US and its allies over a suspected poison gas attack on April 7 in the Damascus suburb of Douma.

Inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) chemical watchdog began their investigation Sunday at the site of an alleged chemical attack near Damascus, a senior official said.

Though Israel has at times urged stronger U.S. involvement against Assad and his Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah reinforcements in Syria, it voiced backing for Saturday's air strikes by Western powers.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will make the announcement by Monday and it will affect companies that are "dealing with equipment related to Assad and any chemical weapons use", according to US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley.

She added: "When our president draws a red line, our president enforces the red line".

Syrian envoy to the UN Bashar Jaafari claimed that the Douma attack was a "masquerade" mounted by rebels.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in an interview in Sunday's Journal Du Dimanche newspaper that "we should join our efforts to promote a political process in Syria that would allow a way out of the crisis".

The Barzah Research and Development Center in Damascus, Syria, before it was struck by coalition forces on Saturday.

Negotiations stalled on April 6, the day before the strikes.

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Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi is likely to lead the Japanese delegation, with his counterpart likely to be U.S. Mr Wang said his visit was China's answer to "positive" messages and policies by Japan.

President Donald Trump has warned Syria's government the USA is "locked and loaded" to strike again if it carries out new chemical attacks.

In a separate interview, Haley told CBS News that new sanctions against Russian Federation, which has forces in Syria supporting the Assad regime, would be announced Monday that would "go directly to any sort of companies that were dealing with equipment related to Assad and chemical weapons use".

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told the BBC the primary objective of the attack was to "say no to the use of barbaric chemical weapons".

"This is not about regime change".

The supply of Russian air defence systems was not discussed, agencies reported, but Assad accepted an invitation to visit the Siberian region of Khanty-Mansi in Russia.

Sablin also said Assad accepted an invitation to visit the Siberian region of Khanty-Mansi in Russian Federation.

The Syrian regime had a pattern of using chemical weapons against the chemical weapons convention, alleged the Pentagon Chief Spokesperson Dana White.

THE United States, France and Britain have launched a new bid at the United Nations to investigate chemical weapons use in Syria that also aims to see a return to diplomacy.

McKenzie said the Him Shinshar chemical-weapons storage facility near Homs was hit by 22 missiles. Speaking on Fox News Sunday, Haley listed three aims for the United States: ensuring that chemical weapons are not used in any way that poses a risk to USA interests, that Islamic State is defeated and that there is a good vantage point to watch what Iran is doing.

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