Malcolm Turnbull has stepped up criticism of Russia saying the country has an obligation to pull the Syrian Assad regime into line following the deadly chemical weapons attack.
As Russia sends a warship off the Syrian coast, the prime minister was again turning the heat up on President Vladimir Putin.
"The onus is now on Russia to pull Assad into line," he told reporters in Papua New Guinea before flying out to India on Sunday.
"Let's be quite clear: the Assad regime is a client state of Russia."
Mr Turnbull reiterated his support for the US missile strikes on the Syrian air base where the gas attack was launched from, describing it as swift, just and calibrated.
He played down the possibility of escalating tensions between the US and Russia.
"The Americans have made it very clear that that is a one-off response," he said.
"They are not proposing to escalate or take further steps in the absence of any other action by the Syrian government.
"So the onus now is on Russia to ensure that Syria does not engage in any other provocative actions, and that Russia itself does not engage in any other provocative actions."
Mr Turnbull, who had just spoken with the defence force chief, said the parties in the Middle East, including Australian forces, were avoiding operating in areas where conflict could occur.
Earlier, Defence Minister Marise Payne confirmed the US had not requested any extra help from Australia after its missile attack.
Instead the US was simply keeping Australia informed of developments.
"I will be meeting with senior members of the coalition again in the coming weeks and we will expect to discuss these activities further," she said, talking up Australia's existing contribution in Iraq.
Senator Payne said Australia was already contributing significantly in advising and assisting personnel in Iraq.
"I know that is acknowledged by Iraq particularly, by the United States and other members of the coalition," she said.
Asked if Australia should be worried about Russia's reaction, Senator Payne said Russia needed to answer what it was going to do with its supporters, like Iran, to work with Bashar al-Assad, to find a solution.
"That's question they should be answering, rather than trying to create another front of argument."
She said by not accepting the Assad regime was responsible for the gas attack Russia was ignoring the evidence, which was available worldwide.