Russia: Trace of Western-made nerve agent seen in United Kingdom samples

Russia warns of war over Syria strikes

Russia says UK led 'staged' Syria gas attack

Analysts have speculated Russian Federation may use cyberattacks to retaliate over recent Western airstrikes on Russia's ally Syria.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned that such an attack could spin out of control, suggesting caution in advance of a decision on how to respond to an attack against civilians last weekend that US officials are increasingly certain involved the use of banned chemical weapons.

Following the suspected weekend chemical attack, the allies have vowed to intervene, even though no United Nations mandate for such action exists.

Maj Gen Konashenkov said Britain was "directly involved in the provocation".

Volunteer first responders and activists said a chemical attack by the Syrian government killed more than 40 people in the town of Douma, which drew worldwide outrage and prompted Washington and its allies to consider a military response.

The United States and Britain have also blamed Syrian President Bashar Assad's government.

Trump cancelled a planned trip to Latin America on 13 April to focus instead on talks with Western allies about possible military action to punish Assad.

United States officials said this year that Russian military hackers compromised routers in South Korea in January and deployed new malware when the Olympics began in February.

In Geneva, U.N. war crimes investigators condemned on Friday the suspected use of chemical weapons in Douma and called for evidence to be preserved with a view to future prosecutions.

The US, France, and Britain announced a joint operation against Syria's government, a week after a suspected chemical attack outside the capital Damascus left more than 40 people dead.

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Trump himself appeared on Thursday to cast doubt on at least the timing of any USA -led military action, tweeting: "Never said when an attack on Syria would take place".

The attack caused global outrage and prompted the U.S. and its allies to consider a military response.

"They could be pre-positioning for use in times of tension", said Ciaran Martin, chief executive of the British government’s National Cyber Security Centre cyber defense agency, who added that "millions of machines" were targeted. The government's capture of Douma, the last town held by the rebels in Eastern Ghouta, marked a major victory for Mr Al Assad.

Both Russia and Iran, Assad's other main ally, have warned his enemies against military action in recent days, underlining their commitment to the Syrian government they have armed and supported through years of conflict.

White House officials did not immediately reply to a Reuters request for more detail about Trump's remarks. The statement said none of the patients had any symptoms of chemical poisoning.

Russian Federation has dismissed the purported chemical attack as fake and strongly warned the USA and its allies against launching a military strike in Syria.

"We're making sure we have all the information to know if we do something, what will happen, how will it happen and will it hurt anyone". British officials said up to 75 people were killed.

The UN Security Council is now holding an emergency session on Syria at Russia's request on Friday.

One senior official said Trump has asked his military to consider options that would include punishing Russian Federation and Iran - Syria's other main foreign backer - in part over his growing level of exasperation with Putin.

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