Russian Federation and Syria both offered during the UN Security Council meeting on Monday to take OPCW investigators to Douma.
The attack comes about a week after Trump told military leaders to draw up plans to prepare a withdrawal of the remaining United States troops from Syria.
Twelve council members voted in favor, while Bolivia joined Russian Federation in voting no, and China abstained. Workers said more than 500 people, mostly women and children, were brought to medical centers.
“We have a lot of options militarily”, he told reporters.
“The question now is whether the president will have a similar reaction after seeing similar images coming out of Douma”, Al Jazeera’s Kimberly Halkett, reporting from Washington, DC, said, adding that several emergency meetings with military and political advisers were taking place in and around the White House on the matter.
Rescuers and medics in Douma say more than 40 people died after a “poisonous chlorine gas attack” late Saturday in the last rebel-held pocket of Eastern Ghouta. US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis on Monday raised the possibility of military action against Syria if it was proved to have carried out a chemical weapons attack.
The U.S. envoy Nikki Haley said Washington will respond to the alleged attack regardless of whether the Security Council takes action or not.
She warned that “Russia’s obstructionism will not continue to hold us hostage when we are confronted with an attack like this one”, and that “either way, the United States will respond”. Russian Federation was a guarantor of a deal the Obama administration struck in 2013 in which Syria was to have removed all of its chemical weapons.
This year at least five Russians working for a private security firm in Syria were killed and dozens more injured in American strikes, but again the incident did not draw a military response from Moscow.
According to CBN News National Security Correspondent Erik Rosales, just hours before the United Nations meeting, Secretary of Defense James Mattis released a statement saying the U.S.is not ruling anything out.
As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, Russia can veto any substantive resolution.
“That will give the United States and possibly France an excuse for military action”.
Yevgeny Serberennikov, from the defense committee at the Federation Council, told the RIA Novosti news agency on Tuesday that Russia is anxious for the OPCW to “finally start carrying out the functions it was created for”.
After capturing most of Ghouta, Syria and its ally Russian Federation secured two negotiated withdrawals last month that saw 46,000 rebels and civilians evacuate.
Israeli officials declined to confirm or deny that Israel had conducted the air strike.
At the time, there was social media reporting that the strike was being carried out by the US military, which the Pentagon denied. President Putin, Russia and Iran are responsible for backing Animal Assad. “Obviously, we are working urgently with our allies and partners to assess what has happened on the ground, if this is the responsibility of Assad’s regime in Syria that is yet another example of brutality and brazen disregard for their people that they show”, she said.
British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called on Monday for a “strong and robust global response” to the attack, after similar calls by Paris and Washington.