Russian President Vladimir Putin has condemned President Donald Trump for initiating missile attacks on al-Shayrat, a Syrian military airfield, Thursday night. Washington gave Russia advance warning of the attack.
"Putin views the U.S. strikes on Syria as aggression against a sovereign state in violation of the norms of international law and on a made-up up pretext," said Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesman, according to the Independent.
The Kremlin also said in its statement the U.S.' attack amounts to nothing more than an "an attempt to distract from the mounting civilian casualties in Iraq," CNN reports.
Citing United Nations' inspector reports, the Kremlin added Syrian President Bashar al-Assad does not have chemical weapons. The motivation for Trump's firing 59 cruise missiles at al-Shayrat came from a chemical weapons attack on Syrian civilians Tuesday, allegedly ordered by Assad, which was launched from the targeted Syrian airfield, according to the U.S. government.
"Vladimir Putin believes that complete disregard for factual information about the use by terrorists of chemical weapons drastically aggravates the situation," Peskov added.
In response to Trump's aggressions, the Kremlin has decided to suspend a bilateral agreement with the U.S. aimed at preventing clashes in air space above Syria, the Russian foreign ministry has warned, according to Al Jazeera. Since the early days of the Syrian civil war, which began in 2011, Russia has been providing military support to Assad.
"This move by Washington has dealt a serious blow to Russian-U.S. relations, which are already in a poor state," Peskov said.