U.S. attacks Syrian government targets with more than 50 missiles, multiple reports say

U.S. attacks Syrian government targets with more than 50 missiles, multiple reports say
Source: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

The United States launched a missile strike on Syria Thursday night, NBC News, CNN and Reuters reported.

"A U.S. military official told NBC that 59 tomahawks had been fired, which hit an airfield near Homs," CNBC said.

The attack is the opening of hostilities by the U.S. against Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad's government. 

Trump confirmed the strike in a brief address to reporters at his Florida home, Mar-a-Lago, where he dined Thursday night with the president of China, Xi Jinping.

Trump said even "beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack."

According to National Public Radio, Trump said he authorized the operation because it was clear Syria had unleashed "banned chemical weapons." 

"Assad choked out the lives of helpless men, women and children," the president said of the chemical attack.

The U.S. has been waging a direct war against the anti-Assad Islamic state group, also known as ISIS, in Syrian territory since 2014.

The strike came in response to Tuesday's chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun, which killed over 70 and sickened hundreds of people.

The airfield Ash Sha'irat is where Assad is believed to have launched the chemical attack.

NBC reported that, according to U.S. officials, "people were not targeted and that aircraft and infrastructure at the site, including the runway, were hit."

On Thursday, per Reuters, Russia's deputy U.N. envoy Vladimir Safronkov had spoken of "negative consequences" if the United States retaliated for the chemical attack.

April 6, 2017, 10:04 p.m.: This story has been updated.

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Celeste Katz

Celeste Katz is senior political correspondent at Mic, covering national politics. She is based in New York and can be reached at celeste@mic.com.

MORE FROM

Sean Spicer said he resigned to avoid having “too many cooks in the kitchen”

Sean Spicer said he wanted to give new communications director Anthony Scaramucci a "clean slate."

Report: Jeff Sessions talked about matters related to the Trump campaign with Russian ambassador

Intercepted conversations suggest Sessions may have spoken about campaign-related issues, despite denying that was the case.

Obamacare repeal bill dealt yet another possibly fatal blow by Senate parliamentarian

Republicans will need to find 60 votes in support of their Obamacare repeal bill, or else strip it of abortion restrictions and a provision that defunds Planned Parenthood.

Don’t cry for Sean Spicer. He knew what he was doing when he took a job working for Donald Trump.

At the end of the day, the former press secretary took a job telling lies in support of a terrible president. Next, he'll probably take a more lucrative one and continue to defend him.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders named White House press secretary after Sean Spicer’s resignation

The shakeup in the White House press shop comes just six months and a day since Donald Trump was sworn in.

3 things to know about Anthony Scaramucci, the new White House communications director

Scaramucci is a former hedge fund manager who was named Yahoo Finance's 2016 "Wall Streeter of the Year."

Sean Spicer said he resigned to avoid having “too many cooks in the kitchen”

Sean Spicer said he wanted to give new communications director Anthony Scaramucci a "clean slate."

Report: Jeff Sessions talked about matters related to the Trump campaign with Russian ambassador

Intercepted conversations suggest Sessions may have spoken about campaign-related issues, despite denying that was the case.

Obamacare repeal bill dealt yet another possibly fatal blow by Senate parliamentarian

Republicans will need to find 60 votes in support of their Obamacare repeal bill, or else strip it of abortion restrictions and a provision that defunds Planned Parenthood.

Don’t cry for Sean Spicer. He knew what he was doing when he took a job working for Donald Trump.

At the end of the day, the former press secretary took a job telling lies in support of a terrible president. Next, he'll probably take a more lucrative one and continue to defend him.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders named White House press secretary after Sean Spicer’s resignation

The shakeup in the White House press shop comes just six months and a day since Donald Trump was sworn in.

3 things to know about Anthony Scaramucci, the new White House communications director

Scaramucci is a former hedge fund manager who was named Yahoo Finance's 2016 "Wall Streeter of the Year."