Trump aides differ over Assad's future after Syria attack

"What Ambassador Haley pointed out is it's very hard to understand how a political solution could result from the continuation of the Assad regime", McMaster said. Still, Haley said the USA didn't see a peaceful future Syria with Assad in power.

The Syrian opposition has reported that Assad's forces have begun flying again from an air base struck last week by USA missiles.

Trump's United Nations ambassador, Nikki Haley, said the United States had "multiple priorities" in Syria and that stability there was impossible with Assad as president.

When Wallace asked what the United States will do if Russia defends its interests in Syria, mentioning Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's comments Friday that the us missile strike in Syria put the two countries "on the verge of a military clash", McMaster stood firm on his position that Russia is "part of the problem" and should become "part of the solution". "And once the ISIS threat has been reduced or eliminated, I think we can turn our attention directly to stabilizing the situation in Syria".

They said the countries will not be deterred from "liberating" Syria.

The United States is vowing to keep up the pressure on Syria after the intense nighttime wave of missile strikes from U.S. ships, despite the prospect of escalating Russian ill will that could further inflame one of the world's most vexing conflicts.

Tillerson will instead meet with his direct counterpart, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Mr Tillerson echoed the comments, telling Face The Nation on CBS, the Russians "have played now for some time the role of providing cover for Bashar Assad's behaviour". "And so Russian Federation could be part of the solution".

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People who sell or eat dog or cat meat face a fine of up to 250,000 Taiwan dollars ($8,000) and their identity may be publicized. This photo taken on May 9, 2016 shows people eating dog meat at a restaurant in Yulin, in China's southern Guangxi region.

Trump has received widespread support for the military action, taken to punish Syrian President Bashar Assad's government after the US concluded he used chemical weapons against Syrian civilians.

Erdogan held a television interview that was reported by Anadolu Agency and dismissed the Syrian government's story that the chemicals came from a depot of a terrorist organization.

Nikki Haley, the USA ambassador to the United Nations, said "getting Assad out is not the only priority" and that countering Iran's influence in Syria was another.

"You know, the interesting thing, Chuck, is, when this chemical weapons murder happened to so many people, Russia's reaction was not, 'Oh, how disgusting, ' or, 'How could they do this to innocent children, ' or, 'How terrible is that?' Their initial reaction was, 'Assad didn't do it".

In January, Johnson said Assad should be allowed to run for election to remain in power in Syria and warned that Britain may have to "think afresh" about how to handle the crisis after failing to live up to its mantra the dictator must go.

Syrian army forces had been losing ground across the country until Russian Federation intervened militarily in September 2015, propping up Mr Assad and protecting its own interests in the region. The strike was in response to the alleged chemical attack in Idlib Province, where dozens of civilians reportedly died from suspected gas poisoning.

Syria's Foreign Ministry condemned the United States strike as "a flagrant aggression" against the country and said Washington's real objective was to "weaken the strength of the Syrian army in confronting terrorist groups".

  • Phil Peters