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Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says video of child chemical-weapon victims was faked

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad ramped up his denial of responsibility for the April 4 sarin gas in Idlib province, The New York Times reports, saying that videos showing children killed in the incident were faked. Assad has countered U.S. claims that Syrian government forces conducted the attack by saying that his warplanes bombed a terrorist weapons depot that contained the chemical weapons, releasing them into the rebel-held area.

More than 80 people reportedly were killed by poison gas in the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun, prompting President Trump to authorize firing 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Syrian base the U.S. believes launched the chemical attack.

"We don't know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhoun," Assad told Agence France-Presse in his first television interview since the bombing. "Were they dead at all?"