Macron says to strike Syria "in due course"

April FrancisApr 24, 2018

"I can not tell you that we have evidence, although we certainly have a lot of media or social media indicators that either chlorine or sarin were used", he told the House Armed Services Committee on Thursday.

The decision came after Syrian government forces allegedly used chemical weapons against rebels in Douma, a town near Damascus, earlier this month. Mr Macron did not supply the source of his information.

Meanwhile, Trump tweeted a clarification saying he had never said when the USA would attack Syria.

"Never said when an attack on Syria would take place", Trump tweeted. "Could be very soon or not so soon at all!" That acknowledged that Syria had crossed a red line that Mr Macron set past year promising French military action if the use of gas was confirmed.

Opinion polls suggested that the British public's support for strikes was lukewarm.

Regarding a possible escalation of military operations in the region, the French president declared that France's "priority is to work on the stability of the region".

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In the years since, the public has questioned the intervention, which became a regular talking point for Sarkozy's critics, including Macron.

He would give the green light to launch a military offensive alongside the United States "once we have verified all the information" to remove "the regime's chemical attacks capabilities", he told TF1 television. He referred to the broad powers that France's constitution grants the executive branch.

The Syrian government has denied the allegation and called the reports fake news used by the West to justify its attacks on Syria.

"I ordered the French armed forces to intervene tonight, as part of an worldwide operation conducted in coalition with the United States of America and the United Kingdom and directed against the clandestine chemical arsenal of the Syrian regime", Mr Macron said. France is already involved in the US-led coalition to fight Isis in Syria and Iraq.

On the extreme right, Marine Le Pen, the leader of the National Front, said France had lost a chance to "appear on the worldwide scene as an independent power".

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