Russia demands UN emergency meeting on Syria, mocks US
The source said such meetings are chaired by UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura .
The meeting, the source added, were set up in early 2016 with joint U.S.-Russian backing.
They are a forum for diplomats to talk about breaches of Syria’s shaky ceasefire.
“Moscow wants the meeting to be held in Geneva today at 1500 GMT”, the source told RIA.
The source added that the task force would discuss “the situation on the ground with connection to the U.S. missile strike on Syria’s Shayrat airbase.”
The U.S. fired cruise missiles earlier on Friday at the base from which President Donald Trump said a deadly chemical weapons attack had been launched.
Russia has sharply condemned the strikes. Russia has the backing of China, Iran in condemning the strike.
Russia has said that only 23 out of the 59 cruise missiles fired from US warships at a Syrian air base hit the target.
The Syrian army’s air defense system will be reinforced by Russia in the near future to protect the most vital infrastructure facilities.
According to Russia’s data recording equipment, Defense Ministry spokesman Major-General Igor Konashenkov said on Friday said the effectiveness of US strike was low.
“The combat effectiveness of the US massive missile strike on Syria’s airbase was thus very low,” he said.
“According to the data recording equipment, only 23 missiles reached the Syrian air base.
“The place of the fall of the other missiles is unknown,” the spokesman said.
Russian radar data show that the Tomahawk missiles were fired from the US destroyers Porter and Ross in the Mediterranean between 03:42 and 03:56 Moscow time, the general said.
In 2016, several batteries of Russia’s air defense system S-300 were moved to the naval logistic facility at Tartus to provide protection for the base and Russian ships off Syria’s shores.
Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said a multi-tier defense system had been created around Tartus and the Hmeymim air base.
At the end of November the newest air defense system S-400 was delivered to Syria after a Turkish F-18 fighter shot down Russia’s Sukhoi-24 bomber.
Pantsir systems protect Russian military facilities from low-flying aircraft and missiles.
Also, the defense of Russian facilities incorporates the system Bastion, capable of hitting naval and ground targets 350-450 kilometers away.