UN Security Council to meet over Syria strikes

The UN Security Council will meet today at Russia's request to discuss air strikes launched by the United States, France and Britain on Syria in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will brief the council during the public meeting scheduled for 1500 GMT, a UN official said.

Guterres said in a statement earlier that all countries should "show restraint in these dangerous circumstances and to avoid any acts that could escalate the situation and worsen the suffering of the Syrian people."

Western officials said a barrage of cruise and air-to-land missiles hit what they said were sites linked to chemical weapons development.

The one-night operation hit three targets: a scientific research facility in the Damascus area, a chemical weapons storage site west of the city of Homs and a command post near Homs, the US military said.

Russia has warned that any military action against Syria would be in violation of international law as it was carried out without UN Security Council approval.

At a council meeting yesterday, the United States, Britain and France made the case for military action, arguing that President Bashar Assad's forces had used toxic gases multiple times in violation of international law.

Russia countered that their action was aimed at overthrowing Assad and keeping Moscow's influence in check.

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