14:57 GMT +321 January 2020
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    Turkey welcomes the airstrike of the United States on the Syrian military base in Ash Sha’irat in the Homs province and will support any future operations aimed at ensuring Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government's accountability, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Friday.

    Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a ceremony in Eskisehir, Turkey, March 17, 2017
    © REUTERS / Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Palace
    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Thursday night, the United States launched multiple Tomahawk cruise missiles at the military airfield in Ash Sha’irat. US President Donald Trump said that the attack was a response to the alleged chemical weapon use in Syria's Idlib on Tuesday, which Washington blames on the Syrian government.

    "We welcome the US operation early this morning targeting the Syrian regime’s Shayrat air base in the aftermath of the regime’s Khan Sheikhoun chemical weapons attack which constituted the latest example of the regime’s crimes against humanity and war crimes, committed in the last six years," the statement said.

    According to the statement, Turkey would fully support steps to ensure accountability of Assad’s administration and to prevent impunity in case of conducting crimes.

    "Turkey will continue its cooperation with the international community to prevent the regime’s continued practices of terror and mass punishment directed at its own people and to pave the way for the advancement of a political solution in Syria," the statement said.

    Earlier in the day, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said Turkey considered the US missile strike on a military airfield in Syria as a positive step and that the Assad administration should be punished.

    On Tuesday, the Syrian National Coalition of Revolutionary and Opposition Forces reported that some 80 people were killed and 200 injured in a chemical weapon attack in Idlib, blaming the Syrian army for the incident. The Syrian Armed Forces refuted the allegations.

    After a 2013 chemical weapon attack in eastern Ghouta, Syria, which killed up to 1,500 people, Syria joined the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. The country's decision to join the convention came as result of a US-Russian agreement on the elimination of chemical weapons in Syria under OPCW control. In January 2016, the OPCW announced the completion of the chemical weapons disarmament in Syria.


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    missile attacks, airstrike, Bashar al-Assad, Mevlut Cavusoglu, United States, Syria, Turkey
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