Macron threatens to strike Syria if use of chemical weapon is proven

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French President Emmanuel Macron has threatened to “strike” Syria if proof emerges that its government is using chemical weapons against civilians.

Speaking in Paris on Tuesday, Macron reaffirmed his stance that the use of chemical weapons represented a “red line” for his government.

“We will strike the place where these launches are made or where they are organised,” he told reporters.

But Macron said French intelligence had so far found no evidence that banned chemical weapons had been used.

“Today, our agencies, our armed forces, have not established that chemical weapons, as set out in treaties, have been used against the civilian population,” he said.

“As soon as such proof is established, I will do what I said. The priority is the fight against the terrorists,” Macron said.

Last year, Macron told Russian President Vladimir Putin that the use of chemical weapons in Syria would be a “red line” that would draw an “immediate response” from France.

Following a deadly chemical weapons attack near Damascus in 2013, the United States and Russia agreed a plan with Syria to remove and destroy its chemical weapons stockpile within a year.

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