The US missile strike in Syria “only facilitated the strengthening of terrorism,” Russia’s representative at the UN Security Council has said, adding that it shows Washington is “afraid” of a “real investigation” into an alleged chemical attack in Syria. The US has “attacked those who combatted terrorism” in Syria, the Russian deputy acting envoy to the UN, Vladimir Safronkov, said at a UN meeting on Friday.

Saying that Washington’s attack on a Syrian airfield in the early hours of Friday morning was an “illegitimate act of aggression” on a “sovereign country,” the Russian diplomat said that the strike had “raised the spirits of terrorists” in the region. Previously, Washington had justified the presence of its troops in Syria with joint efforts in fighting international terrorism, Safronkov said, adding that the recent attack had proven otherwise. MORE