Britain's United Nations ambassador denies Russian accusation over alleged chemical attack in Syria

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The United States didn't waste any time in disputing Russia's accusations.

Russian officials are suggesting that an apparent chemical weapons attack in Syria was a "fabrication" staged by an unnamed foreign intelligence agency.

Chemical weapons experts for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) arrived in Syria to investigate the suspected poison gas attack.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has been urging caution in meetings, trying to avoid a strike that would trigger a broader conflict, two U.S. officials said.

Later, a White House briefing on a call between Trump and May said that they "continued their discussion of the need for a joint response to Syria's use of chemical weapons". Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned Western intervention in Syria would "lead to new waves of migrants to Europe".

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She added: "It's some of the worst piece of fake news we've yet seen from the Russian Federation propaganda machine".

Russian Federation said that the Western powers "cynically" carried out military action hours before a team from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was set to begin an investigation into the suspected chemical weapons attack in the town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta that sparked the intervention by the U.S. and its allies.

Nikki Haley said: "When our president draws a red line, our president enforces the red line".

The capture of Douma from rebels who evacuated this week has clinched a major victory for Assad, crushing what was once a center of the insurgency near Damascus, and underlines his seemingly unassailable position in the war.

She accused Russian Federation of defending Syrian President Bashar Assad and failing to ensure that Syria's chemical weapons were destroyed as the Assad regime had pledged in 2013.

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But this was balanced by a warning from France's ambassador to the U.N., Francois Delattre, who told the Security Council that the Syrian government's decision to use chemical weapons again meant they had "reached a point of no return".

A Downing Street spokesperson added: "They agreed it was vital that the use of chemical weapons did not go unchallenged, and on the need to deter the further use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime".

Since 2015 France has carried out air strikes against Islamic State (IS) militants in Syria as part of allied forces linked to the US -led coalition, conducting about 5 percent of total coalition air missions.

In April past year Trump ordered Tomahawk strikes on the Shayrat Airbase in response to a similar chemical weapons attack on rebel-held Khan Sheikhoun.

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