The Russian military has threatened action against the U.S. if it strikes Syria’s capital city of Damascus, according to multiple news reports.
The threat, by Chief of Russia’s General Staff Valery Gerasimov, was widely reported by Russia media sites such as state news agency RIA and Tass. It said Gerasimov said Russia had “reliable information” about militants preparing to falsify a government chemical attack against civilians.
He continued by saying the U.S. would then use this attack to accuse Syrian government troops of using chemical weapons. He added that the U.S. would then plan to launch a missile strike on government districts in Damascus.
“In several districts of Eastern Ghouta, a crowd was assembled with women, children and old people, brought from other regions, who were to represent the victims of the chemical incident, ” Gerasimov said, according to RIA.
Gerasimov said Russia would respond to a U.S. strike on Syria if the lives of Russian servicemen were threatened, targeting any missiles and launchers involved.
“In case there is a threat to the lives of our military, the Russian Armed Force will take retaliatory measures both over the missiles and carriers that will use them,” he said.