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Friday, April 07, 2017
Here's What World Leaders Had to Say About US Strike on Syrian Airfield
While Syria and Russia
have unsurprisingly called the U.S.’s retaliation airstrikes on a Syrian
airfield an act of aggression, other world leaders have by and large been very
supportive of the move.
The United Kingdom
is fully supportive:
“[W]e fully support the
strike. We have been in close contact with US government
over the last couple of days in preparation for this. The
Americans believe they have exhausted all possible diplomatic peaceful ways
of dealing with the use by the regime of the chemical
weapons and they have been determined to try to prevent future
attacks like this. So, they have taken this action today, limited and
appropriate action against the airfield, airplanes and the equipment that
was used, they believe, in this attack and that is action that we fully
support," UK Defense Secretary Michael Fallon said Friday.
Prime Minister Theresa
May's office also commented on the military action, saying it was "an
appropriate response to the barbaric chemical weapons attack launched by the
Syrian regime, and is intended to deter further attacks."
Turkey has called for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s
"This regime must
be removed from leading Syria as soon as possible and the best way to do that
is by starting the transitional process," said Turkey’s Foreign Minister
France prefers to resume peace talks rather than international
intervention. French President Francois Hollande is convening an emergency
defense meeting to talk about next steps in the country and will relaunch
international peace talks.
Germany declared that Assad brought this on himself. "President Assad alone carries responsibility for these developments" with his "repeated use of chemical weapons and his crimes against his own people,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande said in a joint statement.
Photo: German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Israel is fully supportive of the airstrikes, calling it an
“appropriate response” to the “unthinkable brutality” of the chemical attack.
Reuven Rivlin said Friday the U.S. "serves as an example to the entire
free world" to support steps to end atrocities in Syria.
Israeli Defense Minister
Avigdor Lieberman said President Trump sent a message that "war
crimes" by Syrian President Bashar Assad will not be tolerated.
Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu added that Trump "sent a strong and clear message ... in
both word and action" that "the use and spread of chemical weapons
will not be tolerated."
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is also supportive of the
U.S.’s actions, saying the airstrikes were “a means to prevent further
deterioration of the situation.”
Denmark's Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen tweeted support for
the missile strike: "Good that coward assaults on women, men and children
has consequences. The United States has clearly indicated that (Syrian
President Bashar) Assad's atrocities do not go unpunished."
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the
Australian government supported the U.S.'s “swift and just
"This was a
calibrated, proportionate and targeted response. It sends a strong message to
the Assad regime, and ... has been struck at the very airfield from which the
chemical attack was delivered,” Turnbull said.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau praised the U.S.'s
"limited and focused action" against the airfield in Syria and said
the Syrian government's use of chemical weapons cannot be ignored.
"These gruesome attacks cannot be permitted to continue with
impunity," he said in a statement.
Iran joined Russia and Syria in condemning the
airstrikes. Iran Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said
in a statement that the “unilateral action is dangerous, destructive and
violates principles of international law.”