Zakharova Slams Reports on Numerous Russian Deaths in Syria as Terrorist-Produced Fake News

MOSCOW- The bogus stories about hundreds of Russians allegedly killed in Syria in an air raid by the US-led coalition was launched by armed groups, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a news briefing on Thursday, according to Itar Tass.

Western media’s reports about dozens and even hundreds of Russians killed in Syria in an attack carried out by the US-led coalition, is a classic example of disinformation, she said.

"Reports about the death of dozens and even hundreds of Russian nationals are a classic example of disinformation," she said. "There were not 400, 200, 100 or even ten (who died), according to preliminary information. Five people, who allegedly were Russian citizens, may have been killed. Several people suffered wounds but it requires verification, particularly as to whether all of them are Russian nationals," Zakharova said.

Mass Shooting in Florida School Leaves 17 Dead

A shooting at a Florida high school has left 17 people dead, the local sheriff has confirmed. The suspected shooter has been detained.

Multiple ambulances, police cars and even armored vehicles have been deployed to the school, according to footage emerging from the scene.

At least 14 victims have been confirmed by Broward Sheriff Office.

The victims were taken to Broward Health Medical Center and Broward Health North hospital, police added, according to RT.

It is still not clear how many of the victims were killed and how many were injured.

Russian, Chinese Ambassadors: Any Decision on Syria Should be Made by Syrian People without Foreign Intervention

NEW YORK– Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzya stressed that any decision on Syria should to be taken by the Syrian people themselves without any foreign intervention or dictates.

Addressing the UN Security Council meeting to discuss the situation in Syria, Nebenzya underlined the success of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress recently held in Sochi, considering it a fundamental step towards restoration of security and stability in the country, SANA reported.

He pointed out that Sochi Congress has brought together over 1500 representatives of various Syrian political forces and opposition groups, noting that this unprecedented participation proves once again that the Syrian people themselves should take the lead and decide the fate of their country without any foreign intervention.

Kremlin Urges Media not to Rely on Misinformation on Developments in Syria

MOSCOW- Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov has called on the media not to be guided by "distorted data" in connection with reports on many Russians allegedly killed in Syria.

"We urge [everyone] not to be guided by erroneous information, intentional or unintentional, and be careful about the description of such potentially important incidents in order not to be enthralled by distorted data," the Kremlin spokesman said in comments on reports on a great number of Russians allegedly killed in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor province on February 7, according to Itar Tass.

Lavrov Blasts US, French Dishonest Claims of not Having Sent Delegates to Sochi Congress

MOSCOW- Washington and Paris were disingenuous when they claimed that they had not sent their representatives to the Syrian National Dialogue Congress held in Sochi, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said following talks with his Belgian counterpart Didier Reynders on Tuesday.

Invitations to attend the Sochi Congress as observers were sent to the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (the United States, the United Kingdom, France and China), as well as to Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

"All the invited (countries), except for our western counterparts, sent their high-ranking representatives to attend the event," the Russian top diplomat noted.

Al- Nusra, White Helmets May Be Plotting Chemical Weapons Attack in Syria, Russian Military Warns

HMEIMIM, Syria-  Russian Center for the Reconciliation coordination in Syria has received a phone call warning about a chemical weapons attack plot in Idlib being hatched by the Jabhat al-Nusra terror group (outlawed in Russia) together with the White Helmets organization, the Center said in a statement, according to Itar Tass.

"On the evening of February 12, a resident from the Serakab settlement located in the Idlib province called the Russian Center for Reconciliation to notify (the center) about a chemical weapons attack that could be staged to provide footage for a foreign TV channel," the statement reads. "The caller said that earlier on February 12, Jabhat al-Nusra members travelling in three cars had brought more than 20 chlorine gas cylinders and personal protective equipment to Serakab," the Center added.

Russia Suggests BRICS Partners Gain a Foothold in Promising Syrian Market

MOSCOW- Russia urges its partners among the BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) to establish a foothold in Syria’s promising market, Russian Ambassador to Syria Alexander Kinshchak said in an interview with TASS.

Over the past seven years of the crisis in Syria, the country’s economy has suffered an enormous damage.

"We are aware that the Syrian government will find it difficult to obtain a huge amount of money required for the post-crisis recovery," the Russian ambassador said. "Therefore, Russia suggested that the international community, first of all, the nations friendly to Syria, should join efforts in order to work out a complex program for its revival."

Trump 'Warns' Zionist Entity that Settlements 'Complicate' Peace Process

US President Donald Trump has said Zionist entity’s illegal settlements in occupied Palestinian territories have "complicated" the so-called peace process and urged "care" over the issue.

In the interview with Israel Hayom newspaper, Trump also said he did not believe the Israelis, as well as the Palestinians, were ready to make peace.

Israel Hayom is owned by American Zionist billionaire Sheldon Adelson, a Trump supporter and a backer of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.