Trump says Russia ‘could have known’ about Syrian chemical attack

US President Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump said he wants to think Russia was not aware of the apparent chemical attack on 4 April in Syria that Washington blames on the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

“I would like to think that they [Russia] did not know. But certainly they could have. They were there. We will find out,” Trump stated on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the Syrian National Coalition of Revolutionary and Opposition Forces reported that a chemical weapon attack in Syria’s Idlib province claimed the lives of some 80 people and inflicted harm on an additional 200 civilians. The coalition, as well as a number of Western states, blamed the Syrian government troops for the attack, while Damascus has refuted these allegations.

On Friday, senior US military officials said the United States is assessing information to determine whether Russia knew or assisted Syrian capability in this attack.