World Bulletin / News Desk
Describing Friday’s missile strike as "unwise", Alaeddin Boroujerdi, chairman of the Iranian Shura Council’s foreign policy and national security committee, was quoted by the Iranian Parliamentary News Agency as saying that “the Syrian regime doesn’t possess chemical weapons”.
Friday’s barrage -- which involved 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles -- came in ostensible response to a Tuesday chemical attack in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province.
While Tuesday’s deadly chemical attack has been widely blamed on Syria’s Assad regime, the latter has strenuously denied involvement.
Responding to the early Friday missile attack by the U.S., Moscow suspended a memorandum of understanding signed earlier with Washington that had been aimed at coordinating U.S. and Russian air activity in Syrian airspace.
"Russia has suspended the MoU on the Prevention of Flight Safety Incidents… signed with the U.S.," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
Early Friday, U.S. military forces fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at Syria’s Shayrat military airbase, which American officials say had been used to carry out Tuesday’s chemical attack, the Pentagon confirmed.
The chemical attack killed more than 100 civilians -- and injured some 500 others -- in the town of Khan Shaykhun in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, prompting widespread international outrage.
The missiles were fired from two U.S. destroyers deployed in the eastern Mediterranean, striking the airbase at approximately 3:45 a.m. local Syrian time (0045GMT).
According to the Pentagon, the missile strike targeted Syrian regime aircraft, hardened aircraft shelters, petroleum and logistical storage units, ammunition supply bunkers, air-defense systems and radars.