US President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington, DC, on April 9, 2018. / AFP / NICHOLAS KAMM
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U.S. President Donald Trump Monday pledged "major decisions" on Syria after a suspected chemical attack on a rebel-held town, as calls grew for an international response to the crisis.Trump condemned what he called a "heinous attack on innocent" Syrians in Douma, as he opened a cabinet meeting at the White House, adding that decisions would come in the "next 24-48 hours". Russia, which has repeatedly said that rebels in Syria were preparing a "provocation" to prompt foreign military action, warned against acting hastily over the alleged chemical attack.It briefly appeared in the early hours of Monday that action had been taken, as Syrian state media reported missile strikes on an airbase, but blame later fell on Israel which has carried out repeated strikes on regime targets.The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the country's conflict, said 14 fighters were killed, including Syrian army officers and Iranian forces.Israel has repeatedly warned it will not accept its arch-foe Iran entrenching itself militarily in Syria.After capturing most of Ghouta, Syria and Russia secured two negotiated withdrawals last month that saw 46,000 rebels and civilians evacuate.
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