Russian Federation vetoes Security Council resolution on alleged chemical attack in Syria

Earnest pivoted, and insisted that was a "hypothetical", and "as a practical matter, we know that right now Bashar al-Assad does not have a declared chemical weapons pile".

Even before the meetings, President Putin gave his own pointed assessment of U.S. -Russia relations today on Russian state television.

"We don't want a new Cold War", he said standing next to Trump.

And he said that Russia was open to restoring a "deconfliction" hotline to enable USA and Russian military commanders to avoid accidental clashes over Syria.

"As to the question of the interference in the election, that is fairly well established in the United States", Mr Tillerson said. The U.S. also accused Russian Federation of mounting a disinformation campaign aimed at exonerating Assad.

Lavrov then launched into a lengthy account of all the strongmen Western countries have worked to topple in recent decades, and the chaos that ensued.

It's not immediately clear who will succeed her in leading the joint investigative initiative by the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to assess blame for chemical attacks.

Of Assad, Trump added: "This is an animal". "The most important thing is not to eliminate a political leader from the chessboard, so to speak, but to agree on how the country is going to be built".

Russian Federation remains furious, and the USA and Russian Federation have been confronting each other over it both at the United Nations and in meetings Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had with both Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Putin in Russian Federation on Wednesday.

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On the eve of the talks, far from trying to calm tempers, both sides escalated their rhetoric as the U.S. tried to prise Moscow and Damascus apart.

As Moscow has done many times before, Lavrov paid lip service to a negotiated peace agreement, which has proven elusive despite years of meetings. Russian Federation has never publicly acknowledged any such attacks by Assad's forces and has tried for the past 18 months to help him expand his authority in Syria.

Russia, however, seems determined to defend the Syrian strongman, despite Lavrov's statements to the contrary.

But he was firm that only Assad's forces could have carried out such a strike and insisted that Russian Federation must do more to help strip the regime of its chemical arsenal. Lavrov on Wednesday suggested that some of Syria's former chemical stockpiles were now controlled by the "extremists" fighting the government.

The proposed resolution would have condemned the alleged attack and expressed the council's full backing to investigators from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

"This is just the latest use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime", he said, noting that Assad had presided over more than 50 attacks, using weapons such as cluster bombs and chlorine bombs "intended to maim and kill in the most horrific ways".

The Senate, House, and FBI have all confirmed ongoing investigations into whether the Trump campaign collaborated with Russian Federation to enhance their standing in the election.

"Despite the quantity of existing problems. there are considerable prospects for joint work", Lavrov said, after he took Tillerson for private talks with Putin.

The resolution garnered 10 votes in favor, Russian Federation and Bolivia against, and China, Kazakhstan and Ethiopia abstaining.

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