US senator calls for more troops to fight Islamic State jihadists

USA military presence in northern Syria is "illegal" and their aim to control area makes them "occupation" forces, the statement added.

Syria has denied using any chemical agents, and Russian Federation says the United States gave no evidence Syria has chemical weapons.

"It's very hard to understand how a political solution could result from the continuation of the Assad regime", McMaster said. We're not going to have you cover for this regime anymore. "Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population?"

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson accused Russian Federation of "failing" to "live up to its commitments under the chemical weapons agreements" in relation to the current situation in Syria.

Show host Chuck Todd later pressed Haley over whether or not the administration will release evidence that the chemical weapons attack was indeed spearheaded by the Assad regime.

The United States is prepared to "do more" if necessary in Syria, US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Sunday. He did not rule out additional strikes if Assad continued to engage in atrocities against rebel forces with either chemical or conventional weapons.

But Ms Haley warned that the USA was prepared to "do more" if needed, leaving the door open for more military intervention as the global community awaits a response from President Assad and his allies. "And so I think this is what our secretary of state will be exploring with the Russian leadership this week, and the president is determined to do everything he can to advance American interests".

She added that going forward, the U.S.is not going to allow Russian Federation to "have Assad's back anymore".

Haley is also scheduled to appear on Meet The Press at 10 a.m. along with U.S. Sen. The change in direction comes in response to reports that Assad used chemical weapons against civilians, which President Trump said had crossed a line with him.

Several lawmakers said Sunday that decision shouldn't entirely be up to Trump.

When asked about Washington's anti-Russia sanctions, the US Secretary of State said "there is no reason to be lifting sanctions". But he said Trump now needed to work with Congress to set a future course. "Vladimir Putin and Hasan Rouhani spoke in favor of an objective, unbiased investigation of all the circumstances of the chemical weapons incident on April 4 in the Syrian province of Idlib".

Damascus has repeatedly denied possession of any chemical weapons. In interviews broadcast Sunday, Tillerson said defeating the Islamic State group remains the top focus. Once that threat "has been reduced or eliminated, I think we can turn our attention directly to stabilizing the situation in Syria", he said.

The Lebanese militant group has invested thousands of fighters in the defense of Assad's government.

A week ago, Haley and Tillerson said that the USA was not working towards unseating Assad, and that such a decision should be up to the Syrian people.

Haley said "getting Assad out is not the only priority" and that countering Iran's influence in Syria was another.

Haley's comments came after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told lawmakers he would look into stepping up sanctions on both countries, whose leadership supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who U.S. officials say is responsible for a chemical weapons attack against civilians last week.

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