Secretary of State Rex Tillerson departed for Moscow Tuesday morning amid the growing tensions between the U.S. and Russia, and comments made by President Vladimir Putin aren’t going to make his job any easier.
Putin this morning was speaking at a press conference in which he stated that Assad’s military wasn’t behind the chemical weapons attack last week in Idlib, and he called for the United Nations to fully investigate the incident.
“All incidents reminiscent of the ‘chemical attacks’ that took place in Idlib must be thoroughly investigated,” Putin said, Zero Hedge reported.
Putin then went on to denounce the bombing as a “false flag” attack, after he warned of others that are being prepared for various areas in Syria, including the nation’s capital of Damascus.
“We have information from various sources that such provocations — and I cannot call them anything else — are being prepared in other regions of Syria, including in the southern suburbs of Damascus, where they intend to plant some substance and blame the official Syrian authorities for its use.”
During the presser, Putin told reporters that he didn’t have a meeting with Tillerson on his schedule, but that could change at a moment’s notice.
After Putin spoke, the Russian General Staff released a statement announcing that is has intel that points to militants moving poisonous substances to Aleppo, Khan Shaykhun, and Eastern Guta.
From Zero Hedge:
Chief of the Russian General Staff Main Operational Directorate Col. Gen. Sergei Rudskoy said that the militants are trying to provoke new accusations targeted at Syrian government for alleged use of chemical weapons. The militants aim to incite the US to conduct new strikes, Rudskoy warned, adding that such measures are impermissible. He said that according to the Russian general staff new US airstrikes in Syria are unacceptable and that the Syrian forces possess no chemical weapons.