Pentagon offers Trump military options over Syria

The Pentagon is offering President Donald Trump a series of military options to respond to the Assad regime’s latest use of chemical weapons on Syrian civilians, officials said.

“Our role is to provide the president with the options. In light of this horrific incident, that is where we’re looking at potential military options and providing them to the president,” Col. Patrick Ryder, spokesman for the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, told Anadolu Agency.

Describing the images of civilians injured by chemical weapons as “horrific,” Ryder said the military option is definitely something that the U.S. is looking at and that Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Francis Dunford already met with Trump in this regard.

He declined to give more details about the options, saying that had to wait until the president makes an announcement.

The Pentagon’s comments came as Donald Trump prepared to convene with his top military brass Monday night for a working dinner focused on Washington’s response to a chemical attack in which dozens of people were killed Saturday night outside of Damascus.

Assad regime forces struck targets in Eastern Ghouta’s Douma district on Saturday midnight, using a toxic gas which left at least 78 civilians dead, according to Syrian Civil Defense, also known as the White Helmets.

The Damascus suburb has been under siege for the last five years, and humanitarian access to the area, which is home to 400,000 people, has been completely cut off.

In the past eight months, Assad regime forces have intensified their siege, making it nearly impossible for food or medicine to get into the district and leaving thousands in need of treatment.

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