President Donald Trump condemned the recent chemical weapon attack east of Damascus on Monday, calling the incident “barbaric” and “heinous”, and vowed to settle on an appropriate response over the next day or two.

Over the weekend, Assad regime aircraft bombed the city of Douma, east of Damascus, killing dozens of civilians.

The attack included use of sarin nerve gas, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported – a claim later independently confirmed by US intelligence agencies.

On Sunday, President Donald Trump warned the Syrian government it would pay a “big price” for the suspected chemical weapons attack.

“Many dead, including women and children, in mindless CHEMICAL attack in Syria,” tweeted Trump.

A day later, President Trump said he would decide on a course of action in response to the attack within the next day or two.

Addressing reporters during a cabinet meeting in the White House, President Trump called the attack “heinous” and pushed back on denials by Syria and Russia that chemical weapons were used.

“I’d like to start by condemning the heinous attack on innocent Syrians with banned chemical weapons. It was an atrocious attack, it was horrible. You don’t see things like that – as bad as the news is around the world, you just don’t see those images. We are study the situation extremely closely. We are meeting with our military and everybody else. We’ll be making some major decisions over the next 24 to 48 hours.”

“We are very concerned when a thing like that can happen. This is about humanity – we’re talking about humanity. And it can’t be allowed to happen.”

“If they’re [the Assad regime] innocent, why aren’t they allowing people to go in and through? Because as you know, they’re claiming that they didn’t make the attack. If it’s Russia, if it’s Syria, if it’s Iran, if it’s all of them together, we’re going to figure it out. We’ll know the answers quite soon.”