Russia, Iran Denounce Airstrikes on Close Ally Syria

Iranian Drone Shot Down in February by Israeli Air Force Was Carrying Explosives for Direct Attack

"The American attack is an important signal to the axis of evil - Iran, Syria and Hezbollah", Gallant said.

France released its assessment Saturday of what happened in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7. Russia's military said Syrian air defense units downed 71 out of 103 cruise missiles launched by the USA and its allies.

Shortly after the attack, the Syrian presidency posted on Twitter, "Honorable souls can not be humiliated".

He added that "those responsible must be held accountable".

"The United States and its allies have no proof and, without even waiting for the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to take a position, have carried out this military attack", said the foreign ministry in a statement.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, meanwhile, claimed in a post on his website that the leaders of the U.S., France and Britain "have committed a major crime". Five out the eight missiles used were said to have been destroyed by Syrian air defenses.

Putin similarly said the airstrikes violated global law and added Russian Federation would convene an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council in response.

Putin added that the strike had a "destructive influence on the entire system of worldwide relations".

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Putin said Russian investigators have found no evidence of a chemical attack in Douma. "The U.S. - the possessor of the biggest arsenal of chemical weapons - has no moral right to blame other countries".

A USA embassy spokeswoman confirmed to Reuters that Israel had been notified before the strikes, but she provided no further details.

It said Friday that following an "operational and intelligence-based investigation" the military concludes that the "Iranian aircraft was armed with explosives and was tasked to attack Israeli territory".

The official spoke anonymously according to protocol.

The February episode put off each afternoon of powerful conflict, escalating the battle involving Israel and Iran, one of the overlapping battles in the Syrian war. British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron said the United Kingdom and France had joined in the attack, Reuters reported.

By launching strikes without prior approval from parliament, May dispensed with a non-binding constitutional convention dating back to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. She had received support from her Cabinet in a crisis session.

Iran strongly condemned the USA -led air strike Saturday on Syria, and warned the United States and its allies Britain and France of unspecified consequences. Russia's initial fear may have been that Israel was acting on behalf of the U.S.to punish Assad for his chlorine and sarin gas attack, and outing Israel and warning the USA was about Russian Federation establishing its own red line with regard to the American, rather than Israeli, actions in Syria.

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis asked all civilised nations to urgently unite in ending the Syrian civil war.

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