Canada not involved in Syrian missile strike


OTTAWA – Canadian officials say the federal government will have more to say today about an American missile attack on Syria in retaliation for this week’s chemical weapons attack which killed at least 80 people.

The U.S. fired almost 60 missiles from two warships on Thursday evening against a government-controlled air base in central Syria.

A spokesperson for National Defence in Ottawa said early today that Canadian Forces personnel were not involved in the missile strike.

The statement added that Canadian operations in the region remain unchanged.

Global Affairs issued a corresponding statement saying Canada “continues to condemn in the strongest of terms chemical weapons attacks against Syrian civilians” and that Canadian officials have “been in touch” with their U.S. counterparts.

The statement added that Canada supports efforts “to stop these atrocities.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has not yet issued an official reaction to the U.S. missile strike, but speaking earlier Thursday, he expressed horror over the suspected sarin attack.

“This is a war crime and the international community must stand firmly against such things,” Trudeau said after a day of meetings in New York.

He said Canada strongly condemns the “heinous” chemical weapons attacks against civilians, including children.

Trudeau also promised Canada would be involved in the United Nations process to investigate and punish the perpetrators of the chemical attack, but offered little hint about Canada’s role in any effort to remove Syrian strongman Bashar Assad.