US probing possible Russia collusion in Syria chemical attack

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US probing possible Russia collusion in Syria chemical attack

Washington, Apr 11 (PTI) The US is probing a possible Russian involvement in the Assad regime’s chemical attack in Syria last week, the White House said today.

“We do think that it is a question worth asking the Russians about how is it possible that their forces were co- located with the Syrian forces that planned, prepared, and carried out chemical weapons attack at the same installation and did not have foreknowledge,” a senior administration official told reporters at the White House.

Speaking on condition on anonymity, the official claimed that the Russian and Syrian militaries operate very closely, even down to an operational and a tactical level.

The official said that there were Russian forces co- located with Syrian forces at the Shayrat airfield in addition to many other installations around the country.

However, the senior White House official said as of now they do not have information on the Russian involvement, but it is clear that Moscow is trying to cover up what happened there.

“We’re still looking into the particulars of that question, and there’s not a consensus on our side about the extent or how to interpret the information that we have and continue to get,” the official said in response to a question.

“However, what we do know from looking at a history of the Russian military and Syrian military operating together for the better part of two years now closely. Since the Russian advisory mission and assistance mission began in earnest in 2015. And in addition, two militaries that have had a decades-long supportive relationship,” the official said.

As of now, the United States does not know the tactical intentions of the Russians on that day, on any operations that they may have been involved in, the official said in response to a question.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.