Trump still mulling strike on Syria

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April 13, 2018 - 11:00 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia and Britain exchanged sharp accusations Friday over the suspected poison gas attack in Syria, and the U.S. Navy was moving an additional Tomahawk missile-armed ship within striking range as President Donald Trump and his national security aides mulled the scope and timing of an expected military assault.

Trump’s U.N. ambassador, Nikki Haley, said the president had not yet made a final decision, two days after he tweeted that Russia should “get ready” because a missile attack “will be coming” at Moscow’s chief Middle East ally. The presence of Russian troops and air defenses in Syria were among numerous complications weighing on Trump, who must also consider the dangers to roughly 2,000 American troops in the country if Russia were to retaliate for U.S. strikes.

Despite strong reservations expressed by some Democrats in Congress, the likelihood of Trump ordering a military strike seemed high given his public threats and indications from Britain and France that they, too, believe the Syrian government was behind the April 7 poison gas attack and must be penalized.

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