Thursday, April 13, 2017
PUTIN WARNS OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS PROVOCATIONS TO FRAME ASSAD.
28 And when these things begin to come to pass,(ALL THE PROPHECY SIGNS FROM THE BIBLE) then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption (RAPTURE) draweth nigh.
29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree,(ISRAEL) and all the trees;(ALL INDEPENDENT COUNTRIES)
30 When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.(ISRAEL LITERALLY BECAME AND INDEPENDENT COUNTRY JUST BEFORE SUMMER IN MAY 14,1948.)
3 A fire devoureth (ATOMIC BOMB) before them;(RUSSIAN-ARAB-MUSLIM ARMIES AGAINST ISRAEL) and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.(ATOMIC BOMB AFFECT)
12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their eyes shall consume away in their holes,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB)(BECAUSE NUKES HAVE BEEN USED ON ISRAELS ENEMIES)(GOD PROTECTS ISRAEL AND ALWAYS WILL)
13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.(1/2-3 BILLION DIE IN WW3)(THIS IS AN ATOMIC BOMB EFFECT)
47 And say to the forest of the south, Hear the word of the LORD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.
1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven;(FROM ATOMIC BOMBS) and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
And here are the bounderies of the land that Israel will inherit either through war or peace or God in the future. God says its Israels land and only Israels land. They will have every inch God promised them of this land in the future.
Egypt east of the Nile River, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, The southern part of Turkey and the Western Half of Iraq west of the Euphrates. Gen 13:14-15, Psm 105:9,11, Gen 15:18, Exe 23:31, Num 34:1-12, Josh 1:4.ALL THIS LAND ISRAEL WILL DEFINATELY OWN IN THE FUTURE, ITS ISRAELS NOT ISHMAELS LAND.12 TRIBES INHERIT LAND IN THE FUTURE
Snapshots of affliction-A look at Passover during the years of the Holocaust-Yad Vashem hosts online photo exhibit of holiday celebrations before, during and after World War II-By Jessica Steinberg April 12, 2017, 7:03 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day falls on April 24, a week after the end of Passover.This year, Yad Vashem – The World Holocaust Remembrance Center created an online photo exhibit commemorating the celebration of the significant spring holiday before, during and after the Holocaust.Called “And You Shall Tell Your Children,” the online exhibit is a collection of photographs and Passover artifacts, showing how Jews during the period of the Holocaust maintained their identities and observed the holiday.The photographs and video testimony show European Jews baking matzah and celebrating the seders in their homes before the war, in the ghetto, and in displaced persons camps following the war.
It wouldn't be easy but it is feasible, says activist-Israel’s plan to absorb 100 Syrian orphans seems to be going nowhere-Three months after announcement of initiative, Interior Ministry says it’s still waiting for an okay but can’t say from whom-By Dov Lieber April 12, 2017, 7:01 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
A highly publicized Israeli plan to grant refugee status to 100 orphaned Syrian appears to be stuck in bureaucratic limbo, and the government ministry responsible is at a loss to explain why.Interior Minister Aryeh Deri authorized the absorption of the orphans into Israel in January, but since then the ministry has gone quiet on the issue.Last week’s chemical attack in Syria, which was condemned in Israel as “a stain on humanity,” has not spurred the government into action on the matter.Sabin Hadad, the spokesperson for the Population, Immigration and Border Authority (PIBA), a branch of the Interior Ministry, denied that Israel has dropped its decision to absorb the Syrians. “We are waiting to be told that there are permits from the necessary authority,” she told The Times of Israel on Wednesday.But when asked who exactly PIBA — which normally approves entry visas — was waiting to get permits from, she had no details, other than to say it is “complicated.”When announced, the plan called for giving 100 orphaned Syrian children temporary residency status that would become permanent after four years. They were supposed to be integrated into Arab Israeli families.Furthermore, any of the children’s immediate relatives were also to be considered for refugee status.“The answer is that we are not involved in the process and are waiting for the okay to move forward,” Hadad said Wednesday. “Because there are many factors in the process, many approvals are needed along the way.”Hadad said the project was meant to be carried out in coordination with the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).A spokesperson for the UN agency declined to comment.Professor Nir Boms, a research fellow at the Moshe Dayan Center at Tel Aviv University and a prominent activist pushing for Israel to do more to to help Syrians, told The Times of Israel that there appeared to be no political will to carry out the plan.“If the prime minister is keen to advance the plan, he can do more by instructing relevant agencies to further pursue it,” he said.The Prime Minister’s Office declined to comment.“There was a certain process of investigation to see if this was feasible. It’s not easy, but it’s not impossible,” Boms said.According to Hadad, the original plan was for Israel to absorb Syrians who have already taken refuge in Europe from the now six-year-long civil war.Gal Lusky, the head of Israel Flying Aid, an NGO that has been active in bringing humanitarian aid from Israel to Syria, said that Israel sought her advice on the issue and she “personally recommend the government bypass UNHCR and do it on its own.”She said she pushed for Israel to take orphans who are still in Syria rather than in Europe, adding that the idea had been floating around for three years, and 1,500 Israeli families have already pledged to foster Syrian children.“It’s just a matter of a decision, which lies with the prime minister,” she said.The war was catapulted back into top headlines after an April 4 gas attack on the opposition-held city of Idlib killed over 80 people and injured over 200, many of them children.The attack was widely blamed, including by Israel, on the Syrian government led by Bashar Assad, though Damascus denied involvement.Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “sharply condemned” the attack and called on the international community to complete the process of removing all of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles.“When I saw pictures of babies suffocating from a chemical attack in Syria, I was shocked and outraged. There’s no, none, no excuse whatsoever for the deliberate attacks on civilians and on children, especially with cruel and outlawed chemical weapons,” he said.Israeli President Reuven Rivlin called the pictures coming out of Syria a “stain on all humanity.”The pictures from Syria are a stain on all humanity. The international community must act now to bring an end to this murderous madness.— Reuven Rivlin (@PresidentRuvi) April 4, 2017@Multied Well continue to aid the survivors of the horrors in Syria. We know all too well how dangerous silence can be, and cannot remain mute.— Reuven Rivlin (@PresidentRuvi) April 4, 2017-“We’ll continue to aid the survivors of the horrors in Syria. We know all too well how dangerous silence can be, and cannot remain mute,” he added.On Sunday, the high-level Israeli security cabinet met in the wake of the gas attack and agreed to weigh a proposal to bring Syrian children wounded in last week’s chemical weapons attack to Israel for treatment.However, even at this meeting and despite all the outrage expressed by Israeli leaders, the plan to absorb 100 Syrians was not mentioned, according to the Haaretz newspaper.Israel has treated many of those wounded in the Syrian conflict for the past several years. Israel maintains a field hospital at the border, and around 3,000 Syrians have been treated in Israel since December 2013, according to the Israeli army.The official line from the Israeli army is that it will treat any Syrian who requires serious medical assistance, no matter who they are. Medical assistance to Syrian civil war casualties, the IDF says, is a humanitarian initiative.
Liberman bashes UN for silence on Palestinians killed in Gaza, Lebanon-Defense minister speaks by telephone with envoy Nickolay Mladenov about Hamas executions and refugee camp shootings-By Times of Israel staff April 12, 2017, 7:12 pm
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman chastised United Nations envoy to the Middle East Nickolay Mladenov for not commenting on recent cases of Palestinians being killed in Lebanon and Gaza, saying it showed the “hypocrisy and double standards” the world has against Israel.Liberman spoke to Mladenov by telephone on Wednesday, the Defense Ministry said in a statement.Last week, five people were killed in clashes at the Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon, while three Palestinians were executed by hanging in Gaza by Hamas for allegedly “collaborating” with Israel.“The international community’s disregard for the dozens of people killed and injured again proves the hypocrisy and double standards by which the world operates, in which it overlooks serious cases like these, while on the other hand, it denounces every justified action taken by Israel against terrorism,” Liberman said, according to his office.The defense minister added that he expects the executions and deaths of these Palestinians to be discussed in an upcoming UN Security Council meeting.Clashes erupted in the Ain al-Hilweh camp late Friday as Palestinian factions participating in a joint security force begun deploying throughout the area in the southern city of Sidon.They came under fire from a local Islamic extremist group in part of the camp, prompting clashes that Lebanese and Palestinian medics said Sunday had killed five people and wounded at least 30, mostly civilians.Lebanon’s army does not enter Palestinian refugee camps, where security is managed by joint committees of Palestinian factions.Ain al-Hilweh is home to some 61,000 Palestinians, including 6,000 who have fled the war in Syria.Last Thursday the Hamas-controlled Gaza interior and national security ministry said in a statement that tree men were hanged for helping Israeli intelligence gather information on its operations.The executions come amid a hunt by Hamas, the de facto ruler of the Gaza Strip, for “collaborators” with Israel after the recent assassination of one of its terror chiefs, Mazen Faqha, which it blames on the Jewish state.However, according to the ministry, none of the three men killed was involved in Faqha’s death.The three were all charged with handing over information about the whereabouts of Hamas men and military sites over the past three decades, which led to the death of Hamas fighters.Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of the Middle East division of Human Rights Watch, said in a statement, “The abhorrent executions by Hamas authorities of three men in Gaza deemed to be collaborators project weakness, not strength.”“Hamas authorities will never achieve true security or stability through firing squads or by the gallows, but rather through respect for international norms and the rule of law,” she said.Under Palestinian law, death sentences can be handed out for those collaborating with Israel, murderers and drug traffickers.AFP contributed to this report.
Trump seems to rule out deeper US intervention in Syria-US president also says Kremlin’s backing for Assad ‘very bad for Russia,’ as Tillerson meets with Lavrov in Moscow-By VIVIAN SALAMA April 12, 2017, 5:32 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
WASHINGTON (AP) — US President Donald Trump is appearing to rule out deeper American military intervention in Syria beyond the airstrikes he ordered based on US evidence that Syrian President Bashar Assad attacked civilians with chemical weapons.“Are we going to get involved with Syria? No,” Trump told Fox Business News in an interview that aired Wednesday.Trump also warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that in backing Assad, Putin was supporting someone who is “truly an evil person.”“I think it’s very bad for Russia. I think it’s very bad for mankind. It’s very bad for this world,” Trump said.Later Wednesday, Trump planned to hold talks at the White House with Jens Stoltenberg, NATO’s secretary-general, while Trump’s secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, was scheduled to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.Since Trump took office in January, he has been confronted by European allies who have fear his administration will go easy on Russia. During his 2016 campaign, Trump said he would decide whether to honor the commitment to protect the Baltic republics against Russian aggression, based on whether those countries “have fulfilled their obligations to us.”He has since made his support of NATO allies clear, but has reiterated his stance that European members need to meet their end of the bargain if they are to continue benefiting from the military alliance.The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is a military alliance of European and North American democracies created after World War II to strengthen international cooperation as a counter the rise of the Soviet Union.Putin told state-run Mir television that relations between Moscow and Washington have deteriorated in the early months of Trump’s presidency. “It can be said that the level of trust at the working level, especially at the military level, has not become better but most likely has degraded,” Putin said in an interview broadcast Wednesday.Putin’s spokesman said Putin may meet with Tillerson “if it is decided” that Putin needs to be briefed on the Tillerson-Lavrov talks.
MIGRATING BIRDS IN ISRAEL EATS HUMANS FLESH FOR COMING AGAINST ISRAEL-JERUSALEM
11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog (RUSSIA/ARAB/MUSLIMS) a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers (EAST OF THE DEAD SEA IN JORDAN VALLEY) on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog (RUSSIAN) and all his multitude:(ARAB/MUSLIM HORDE) and they shall call it The valley of Hamongog.(BURIEL SITE OF THE 300 MILLION,RUSSIAN/ARAB/MUSLIMS)
12 And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land.(OF ISRAEL)
16 And also the name of the city shall be Hamonah. Thus shall they cleanse the land.(OF THE ISRAEL-GOD HATERS)
17 And, thou son of man, thus saith the Lord GOD; Speak unto every feathered fowl, and to every beast of the field, Assemble yourselves, and come; gather yourselves on every side to my sacrifice that I do sacrifice for you, even a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel, that ye may eat flesh, and drink blood.(OF RUSSIAN/ISLAMIC HORDES AGAINST ISRAEL)
18 Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, of rams, of lambs, and of goats, of bullocks, all of them fatlings of Bashan.
19 And ye shall eat fat till ye be full, and drink blood till ye be drunken, of my sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you.
20 Thus ye shall be filled at my table with horses and chariots, with mighty men, and with all men of war, saith the Lord GOD.
21 And I will set my glory among the heathen, and all the heathen shall see my judgment that I have executed, and my hand that I have laid upon them.
22 So the house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God from that day and forward.
17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;(AGAINST ALL NATIONS ARMIES THAT COME AGAINST JERUSALEM AND ISRAEL)
18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
1 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, set thy face against Gog,(RULER) the land of Magog,(RUSSIA) the chief prince of Meshech (MOSCOW) and Tubal,(TOBOLSK) and prophesy against him,
3 And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog,(LEADER OF RUSSIA) the chief prince of Meshech(MOSCOW) and Tubal:TOBOLSK)
4 And I (GOD) will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws,(GOD FORCES THE RUSSIA-MUSLIMS TO MARCH) and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:
5 Persia,(IRAN,IRAQ) Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:
6 Gomer,(GERMANY) and all his bands; the house of Togarmah (TURKEY) of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee.(AFRICAN MUSLIMS,SUDAN,TUNESIA ETC)
7 Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them.
1 Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog,(LEADER OF RUSSIA) and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech (MOSCOW) and Tubal: (TUBOLSK)
2 And I will turn thee back,(RUSSIA-ARAB MUSLIM ISRAEL HATERS) and leave but the sixth part of thee,(5/6TH OR 300 MILLION DEAD RUSSIAN/ARAB/MUSLIMS I BELIEVE) and will cause thee to come up from the north parts,(RUSSIA) and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel:
3 And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.
4 Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands,( ARABS) and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured.
5 Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.
6 And I will send a fire on Magog,(NUCLEAR ATOMIC BOMB) and among them that dwell carelessly in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
7 So will I make my holy name known in the midst of my people Israel; and I will not let them pollute my holy name any more: and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, the Holy One in Israel.
8 Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord GOD; this is the day whereof I have spoken.
Putin warns of chemical weapons ‘provocations’ to frame Assad-In deflecting blame from Damascus over chemical attack, Moscow points to flawed intelligence on WMDs that led to 2003 US invasion of Iraq-By AFP April 11, 2017, 6:19 pm-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday warned of future chemical weapons “provocations” in Syria to frame President Bashar Assad, just as Washington’s top diplomat arrived for talks in Moscow.“We have information from various sources that such provocations — I cannot call them otherwise — are being prepared in other regions of Syria, including in the southern outskirts of Damascus, where they are again planning to throw some kind of substance and accuse Syrian official authorities of using it,” Putin said at a televised press conference.He said Russia was set to appeal to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and “call on the international community to thoroughly investigate such incidents.”Putin insisted that reports over the suspected chemical attack in Syria that killed dozens of people in the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun last week was reminiscent of the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, justified by the alleged existence of weapons of mass destruction.“This ended with the country’s destruction, with the growth of the terrorist threat and the appearance of the Islamic State on the international stage, no more, no less,” he said.Russia’s defence ministry also said it had information that rebel fighters were bringing “poisonous substances” to the areas around the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhun and Eastern Ghuta, among other places.“The goal of these actions is to create yet another reason to accuse the Syrian government of using chemical weapons and provoke new strikes by the United States,” it said in a statement.The latest claims came as US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson touched down in Russia to confront the Kremlin over its support for Assad on the first visit by a senior member of Trump’s administration.Putin said Russia and Syria were being portrayed as a “common enemy” in a bid to bring together the United States and its Western allies after many leaders criticized Trump ahead of his election.“We are ready to tolerate this, but we hope that this will nonetheless lead to some kind of positive cooperation trend,” he said.Moscow has sought to deflect blame from its long-time ally Assad over the alleged chemical attack and says Syrian jets struck a rebel arms depot where “toxic substances” were being put inside bombs.Following on from the Tillerson visit, Moscow has announced Lavrov will host three-way talks with his counterparts from Syria and Iran later this week.
US strike destroyed fifth of Assad air force, Mattis says-After missiles pound regime air base, American defense minister warns Syria against using chemical weapons again-By Thomas WATKINS and Ella Ide April 11, 2017, 6:39 am-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
WASHINGTON (AFP) — The US strike on a Syrian air base destroyed a fifth of the Damascus regime’s remaining warplanes, Pentagon chief Jim Mattis said Monday as Washington fired a fresh salvo of warnings at President Bashar al-Assad.The public assessment of Friday’s missile strike and the forceful rhetoric came as G7 ministers met in Italy to send a “clear and coordinated” message to Russia over its support for Damascus.The United States on Friday blasted 59 Tomahawk missiles at the Shayrat air base near Homs, which the Pentagon said Assad’s jets had used to launch a deadly chemical attack on rebel-held Idlib province.“The United States will not passively stand by while Assad murders innocent people with chemical weapons, which are prohibited by international law and which were declared destroyed,” Mattis said in a statement, noting that 20 percent of Assad’s “operational” aircraft were destroyed.“The Syrian government would be ill-advised ever again to use chemical weapons,” he added.Mattis’s warning came as White House spokesman Sean Spicer appeared to lower the threshold for new US action against Assad to include barrel bombs, a crude yet hugely destructive weapon of choice for the Syrian leader.“If you gas a baby or drop a barrel bomb onto innocent people, you will see a response from” President Donald Trump, Spicer said.But US officials later walked back Spicer’s remarks.“Nothing has changed in our posture,” a senior administration official said.“As the president has repeatedly made clear, he will not be telegraphing his military responses,” the official said.Trump discussed Syria during separate telephone calls Monday with British Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.May and Merkel “expressed support for the action of the United States and agreed with President Trump on the importance of holding Syrian President Bashar al-Assad accountable,” the White House said in a statement.Downing Street said Trump and May had “agreed that a window of opportunity now exists in which to persuade Russia that its alliance with Assad is no longer in its strategic interest.”The two leaders were looking to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s trip to Moscow this week as an opportunity to lay the groundwork for a “lasting political settlement,” May’s office said.At the outset of the G7 gathering in the Tuscan city of Lucca, Britain’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson described Assad as “toxic,” and said it was “time for (Russian President) Vladimir Putin to face the truth about the tyrant he is propping up.”Tillerson also attended the meeting at the 15th century Ducal Palace, along with foreign ministers from Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan.The annual two-day meeting had initially been expected to focus on talks with Tillerson about hotspots like Libya, Iran and Ukraine.But the agenda is now likely to be dominated by last week’s suspected chemical weapons attack that killed at least 87 civilians.Washington’s missile strike was the first time it had intervened directly against the regime of Assad, who is fighting a civil war with the backing of Russia and Iran.Several rounds of UN-backed peace talks have failed to end the conflict, which has killed more than 320,000 people since March 2011.Iran and North Korea have slammed Washington’s retaliation and put it on a direct diplomatic collision course with Moscow, where Tillerson heads Tuesday for talks with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.Johnson on Monday called on Moscow to do “everything possible to bring about a political settlement in Syria and work with the rest of the international community to ensure that the shocking events of the last week are never repeated.”French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said the pressing task for the G7 was to “find a political solution, a political transition” in Syria, particularly if the West wanted to triumph over the Islamic State group.Italy arranged a last-minute meeting for Tuesday between the G7 ministers and their counterparts from Jordan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.Italian media said the aim was “to avert a dangerous military escalation.”Japan’s Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said he told Tillerson that Tokyo supports the US in its push to “deter the spread and use of chemical weapons,” and discussed the pressing North Korean nuclear threat.Japan hopes the strong US response on Syria will also put pressure on Pyongyang, which is showing signs of preparing for its sixth nuclear test and more test-firings of ballistic missiles.“We agreed that the role of China is extremely important. Japan and the United States will jointly call on China to play a bigger role,” Kishida told reporters after meeting Tillerson in Lucca.Meanwhile, the leaders of southern EU nations said Monday the US missile strike on the Syrian air base was “understandable.”“The strike launched by the United States on Shayrat Airfield in Syria had the understandable intention to prevent and deter the spread and use of chemical weapons and was limited and focused on this objective,” they said in a joint statement after a summit in Madrid.
Trump, May aim to convince Moscow to end Assad support-In phone call, leaders discuss how to persuade Russia to drop Syrian leader in wake of chemical attack-By AFP April 11, 2017, 2:19 am-THE TIMES OF ISRAEL
LONDON — A “window of opportunity” exists to convince Moscow to end its support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, British Prime Minister Theresa May and US President Donald Trump said in a phone call Monday.“The prime minister and the president agreed that a window of opportunity now exists in which to persuade Russia that its alliance with Assad is no longer in its strategic interest,” a spokeswoman for May’s Downing Street office said.The phone call between the two leaders came after last week’s suspected chemical attack on a rebel-held Syrian town that killed at least 87 civilians.Washington retaliated with an air strike on a Syrian air base, the first time the US has directly intervened against the Assad regime which it has blamed for the attack on civilians.Britain said it “fully supported” the US strikes and both countries have put pressure on Russia to stop backing the Syrian regime, with British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson cancelling a visit to Moscow scheduled for Monday.Johnson said his decision came after developments in Syria “changed the situation fundamentally” and that his priority would instead be the meeting of G7 foreign ministers on Monday.The Italy summit of the seven major advanced economies was expected to be dominated by Syria, ahead of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson travelling to Moscow on Tuesday for talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.In their phone call on the eve of Tillerson’s visit, Trump and May said it “provides an opportunity to make progress towards a solution which will deliver a lasting political settlement”.The Syrian regime has denied it was behind the April 4 attack in the town of Khan Sheikhun.Moscow has so far stood by Assad, describing the US strikes as inflicting “considerable damage” to already “lamentable” US-Russia ties.Russia also threatened to suspend a vital hotline established to avoid mid-air collisions or clashes with a US-led coalition targeting the Islamic State group.More than 320,000 people have been killed in Syria since the conflict erupted in March 2011 with anti-government demonstrations.
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