Australian government was briefed by the US on the strikes shortly before they began

• Syria latest: Trump orders air strikes against Assad regime – live updates

American-led air strikes against Syria have sent an unequivocal message to the regime of Bashar al-Assad that the use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated, the Australian prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has said.

Australia, a staunch ally of the US and a member of the Five Eyes security alliance, was not a part of the attacks on Damascus and Homs, but has issued a statement lending its support to the coalition’s actions. France and the UK joined the US in striking Syrian targets.

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Read More Turnbull says strikes send strong message to Syria and its backers

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