French President Emmanuel Macron vows reprisals if chemical weapons used in Syria

"A very clear red line exists on our side, the use of chemical weapons by whomever," Macron said at a joint news conference in Versailles with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

By: AFP | Versailles | Published:May 29, 2017 10:26 pm
Emmanuel Macron, Syria chemical attack, Islamic state French President Emmanuel Macron. (File)

France would respond immediately to any use of chemical weapons in Syria, French President Emmanuel Macron said today while urging a stepped-up “partnership” with Moscow in fighting the Islamic State group in the country. “A very clear red line exists on our side, the use of chemical weapons by whomever,” Macron said at a joint news conference in Versailles with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

“Our absolute priority is the fight against terrorism and the eradication of terrorist groups and Daesh in particular,” he said, using an alternate name for the Islamic State group.

“It’s the guiding principle of our action in Syria and in which I want… for us to be able to strengthen our partnership with Russia.”

The newly elected French leader said he favoured “a democratic transition” in Syria that would “preserve the Syrian state”. He added that “failed states in the region are a threat to our democracies, and we have seen each time they have enabled terrorist groups to advance.”

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