MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The military and political situation in Syria has worsened dramatically after the recent US missile strike on a Syrian airbase, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Wednesday.
"The military and political situation in that country has sharply deteriorated as a result of a massive strike by the United States overnight to April 7 on the Sha'irat airfield, where, as you know, the Syrian Air Force's aircraft are based," Zakharova said at a briefing.
On April 7, the United States launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Syrian 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 province on April 4, which resulted in the death of over 80 people, an incident which Washington blames on the Syrian government.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on April 5 that the airstrike near Khan Shaykhun by the Syrian air force hit a terrorist warehouse that stored chemical weapons slated for delivery to Iraq, and called on the UN Security Council to launch a proper investigation into the incident.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on April 6 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 Sergei Lavrov on Saturday criticized the US missile attack as a violation of the international law.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei described the US missile strike against the Syrian airfield as a strategic mistake.
The US missile attack claimed the lives of 10 people, an officer of the Syrian Armed Forces told Sputnik. The Russian Defense Ministry said that the attack left two Syrian servicemen missing, four killed, and six suffering severe injuries from the fire. Homs Governor Talal Barazi said on April 7 that at least two civilians from a nearby village and five Syrian servicemen were killed.
The ministry said the Russian air group in Syria was protected by S-400 and Pantsir-S1 air defense systems on a round-the-clock basis.
In an exclusive interview with Fox Business on April 12, US President Donald Trump blamed the current situation in Syria on Moscow's support for country's Assad, calling the Syrian leader "an animal."