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US Official Says Assad Must Go as Syria's Leader

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The meeting in the Tuscan walled city of Lucca brings together the foreign ministers of France, Germany, Britain, Japan and Canada - as well as the USA and current G7 president Italy.

Putin said Thursday that groundless accusations in the chemical weapons incident in Syria's Idlib were unacceptable before the investigation into the matter had been carried out while Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Saturday criticized the U.S. missile attack as a violation of the global law.

"Or, it could be that the Assad regime is playing the Russians for fools, telling them that there are no chemical weapons, all the while stockpiling them on their bases", Haley said.

"In no way do we see peace in that area with Assad as the head of the Syrian government", Nikki Haley told NBC's "Meet the Press".

Her comments, made during an interview with CNN on Saturday (8 April), signal a turnaround from the earlier stance of the U.S. that driving out Isis was a bigger priority in Syria than Assad's ouster. Asked on CBS's "Face the Nation" whether deposing Assad was a priority, he replied: "I think the president has been quite clear".

Sadr, who commands a large following among the urban poor of Baghdad and the southern cities, is the first Iraqi Shia political leader to urge Assad to step down.

Moscow says there is no proof that the Syrian military carried out the attack, and called the US missile strike an act of aggression that violates worldwide law.

The top priority for the United States in Syria is to defeat Daesh, said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said at a TV interview on Sunday. The Washington Post's Amanda Erickson explains President Trump's decision to strike Syria.

He also reiterated his support of Mr Trump's cruise missile strike in the early hours of Friday, UK time.

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Johnson called on Russian Federation, a key Assad ally, "to do everything possible to bring about a political settlement in Syria and work with the rest of the global community to ensure that the shocking events of the last week are never repeated".

Washington D.C. (USA), Apr. 10 (ANI): U.S. President Donald Trump is discussing with members of his administration the possibility of introducing sanctions against Russian Federation and Iran for supporting the Syrian Government.U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Russia and Iran, President Assad's key military backers, are threatening retaliation if there are any further American air strikes and the task of breaking the present deadlocks over Syria remains enormous.

Those include alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election, Washington's accusation that Russia is violating an important arms control treaty, and trying to bridge differences on how to conduct the fight against Islamic State.

Johnson will demand western nations draw up "very punitive sanctions" at a G7 foreign ministers meeting Monday in response to last week's chemical attack in Idlib province, in which up to 90 people were killed.

The cancellation "once again confirms doubts about the added value of dialogue with the British, who do not have their own position on the majority of current issues", the foreign ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

He said the United Kingdom continues to "deplore" Moscow's defence of Assad's regime as he pulled out of talks with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov.

Mr Tillerson said that Russia's failure to ensure Syria's chemical weapons stockpiles were destroyed enabled the attack.

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