"We are at the edge of a risky precipice", the diplomat said.
In November, Russia used its veto power at the council to block the renewal of a previous UN-led probe that found the Syrian air force had dropped sarin on the town of Khan Sheikhun in April a year ago.
Asked by a reporter about a possible US military response, Mattis said, "I don't rule out anything right now".
The crisis was due to be discussed later on Monday at an urgent UN Security Council meeting, while the U.S. also circulated a draft resolution for a new independent inquiry of chemical weapons attacks in Syria. But that strike didn't stop Assad from expanding control over the country - largely because most of the regime's military might comes from Russian Federation and Iran.
At a photo-taking session in the Pentagon before a meeting with the emir of Qatar on Monday, Mattis said the Trump administration is consulting with allies in Europe, the Middle East and elsewhere.
Asked in Berlin whether she supports the idea, German Chancellor Angela Merkel responded unenthusiastically, saying that "the evidence that chemical weapons were used there is very, very clear".
On Saturday, activists said the Syrian forces used chlorine gas in an attack against Douma, the last rebel-held area in the Eastern Ghouta countryside of Damascus.
Trump's comments slightly softened his earlier tweets on April 8 where he directly blamed Russia, Syria and Iran for the alleged chemical attack.
And he accused Britain, France and others of "blindly" following the USA line on Syria, using "slander, insults, hawkish rhetoric, blackmail, sanctions and threats to use force against a sovereign state".Читайте также: Israeli defense minister claims there are 'no innocent people' in Gaza
Both Damascus and Moscow had warned against using the allegations to justify military action against Assad. The Syrian government's main ally, Russia, says the reports of the chemical attack are bogus.
Russian Federation said there is no evidence Syria carried out such an attack.
Nebenzia, reflecting earlier warnings from President Vladimir Putin's Kremlin, said: "From what we hear now, I am afraid they are looking for a military option, which is very, very unsafe". More than 40 people were reportedly killed.
Iran's Fars news agency said four Iranian military advisers were killed in the strike and the foreign ministry in Tehran accused Israel of "flagrant aggression". If Trump decides to proceed quickly, the most likely partner would be France rather than Britain, because of concerns about obtaining permission from Parliament, said the official, who wasn't authorized to discuss the planning publicly and requested anonymity.
The folks who cheered Trump a week ago when he said we were getting out of Syria, will they cheer him if he announces that we are going deeper in? In addition, Israel says an Iranian drone that penetrated Israeli airspace in February was launched and controlled from this base.
After targeting Iranian units in Syria in retaliation, an Israel F-16 was shot down by Syrian anti-aircraft fire in one of the conflict's most notable escalations.
Syrian state media, citing a military source, carried a similar report. That the attack comes at a time when a possible deal was being brokered by Russian Federation between Assad's government and the rebels means that violence, in all likelihood, will continue.
Damascus and Moscow said the groups controlling the area were not covered by the truce, and the offensive was needed to end the control of Islamist insurgents over the area's large civilian population and to stop mortar attacks on the capital.При любом использовании материалов сайта и дочерних проектов, гиперссылка на обязательна.
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