Apr 7, 2017 - Politics & Policy

The countries for and against the U.S. missile strike on Syria

U.S. Navy via AP

International powers are weighing in on the U.S. missile strike on a Syrian military airbase late Thursday night. With conflicting interests as the Syria crisis comes to a head, see where different global powers stand on U.S. intervention:

In support of U.S. strike

  • Canada: "Canada fully supports the United States' limited and focused action to degrade the Assad regime's ability to launch chemical weapons attacks against innocent civilians, including many children," PM Justin Trudeau said in a statement.
  • Saudi Arabia: The Saudi Foreign Ministry expressed its "full support ... for the American military operations on military targets in Syria," according to a statement from the Saudi Press Agency. An official source in the foreign ministry also noted "the courageous decision of US President Donald Trump, which represents a response to crimes this regime has committed towards its people in light of the inaction of the international community in stopping it in its tracks."
  • Turkey: "We welcome the US operation," Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusogulu said, calling the airstrikes "a positive response to the Assad regime's war crimes." Turkey's presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin also called for a no-fly zone creation of safe zones in Syria.
  • Australia: PM Malcolm Turnbull said the country "strongly supports the swift and just response of the US" to the chemical attack. He added that the US' response was "calibrated, proportionate, and targeted," which will "send a strong message to the Assad regime."
  • Israel: "Israel fully supports President Trump's decision," the office of PM Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted. "In both word and action, @POTUS sent a strong and clear message today that the use and spread of chemical weapons will not be tolerated."
  • Japan: "The Japanese government supports the US government's resolve that it will never tolerate the spread and use of chemical weapons," Japanese PM Shinzo Abe told reporters.
  • U.K.: "The U.K. Government fully supports the U.S. action, which we believe was an appropriate response to the barbaric chemical weapons attack launched by the Syrian regime, and is intended to deter further attacks," a U.K. government spokesperson said in a statement.
  • Jordan: Government spokesman Mohammad Momani said Jordan considers the strike "a necessary and appropriate response to the non-stop targeting of innocent civilians" with weapons of mass destruction, and reiterated that the Syrian chemical attack was a "inhumane and heinous act."
  • Spain: The Spanish government issued a statement that said "The action taken by the United States in recent hours against a military base in Syria is a measured and proportionate response to the use of chemical weapons against the civil population of the country by the Syrian army."
  • Italy: Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano said in a statement on Friday "Italy understands the reasons for a US military action, proportionate and well-timed, as a response to an unacceptable feeling of impunity, and as a deterrence signal against the risk of further use of chemical weapons by Assad."
  • Germany: German Chancellor Angela Merkel said "This attack by the United States of America is understandable, given the aspect of the war crimes, given the suffering of innocent people and given the logjam in the UN Security Council."

Against U.S. strike

  • Russia: Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Russian state-run news agency Sputnik that president Putin regards the attacks on Syria as "an aggression against a sovereign state in violation of the norms of international law, and under a trumped-up pretext at that." The Russian military also said it plans to help Syria strengthen its air defenses following the strike. President Putin will be chairing his Security Council today to discuss next steps.
  • Iran: "We strongly condemn any unilateral military action and the missile attack on the Al Shayrat airbase... and believe that such actions... only strengthens terrorists who were already weak and adds to the complexity in Syria and the region," Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said.
  • China: China's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said the country "always opposes the use of force in international affairs and we advocate resolving disputes peacefully through dialogues... We always hold that the Syrian issue should be resolved through political means." But she also emphasized that China opposes the use of chemical weapons.
  • Lebanon: Lebanon's Hezbollah called the strike a "foolish" move that will lead to serious regional tensions.

This post was originally published at 9:40a.m. Follow along for live updates.

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