Trump: 'Animal Assad' will pay 'big price' over Syria chemical attack

Trump: 'Animal Assad' will pay 'big price' over Syria chemical attack
US President Donald Trump called his Syrian counterpart an 'animal' in a series of angered tweets over Saturday night's chemical attack in Douma.
2 min read
08 April, 2018
Rescue workers and activists say up to 100 people have died [Getty]
US President Donald Trump on Sunday said there will be repercussions following a chemical attack in Syria, he said were at the hands of "animal Assad".

Trump on Sunday said there will be a "big price to pay" after what he called a "mindless CHEMICAL attack" in Syria, allegedly involving chlorine gas or a nerve agent such as sarin.

Trump also branded Syrian President Bashar al-Assad an "animal."

"President Putin, Russia and Iran are responsible for backing Animal Assad. Big price to pay," Trump said in a pair of tweets which began with a discussion of the attack in Syria's Eastern Ghouta.

"Many dead, including women and children, in mindless CHEMICAL attack in Syria. Area of atrocity is in lockdown and encircled by Syrian Army, making it completely inaccessible to outside world," the president said.

The latest atrocity in the rebel enclave Douma has killed up to a hundred people and left more than 1,000 injured, according to activists and the White Helmets rescue group. 

Syrian state media and the regime's ally Russia denounced claims of chemical use as "fabrications", which has been rejected by more Western powers and Turkey.

"Open area immediately for medical help and verification," Trump said. "Another humanitarian disaster for no reason whatsoever. SICK!"

The latest alleged attack comes a few days after the first anniversary of the Khan Sheikhoun sarin attack which killed at least 100 civilians.

Trump responded to that attack within 72 hours, when US warships in the Mediterranean fired 59 cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase. 

Assad denied ordering that attack and Russia has continued to give him diplomatic cover at the United Nations.

Trump on Sunday criticised his predecessor Barack Obama for not striking in 2013 after a sarin attack in Ghouta, when he had previously warned that the use of chemical weapons in Syria was a "red line".  

"If President Obama had crossed his stated Red Line in The Sand, the Syrian disaster would have ended long ago! Animal Assad would have been history!" Trump said.