France’s Macron threatens Syria strikes if chemical weapon use proven

French President Emmanuel MacronImage copyright
AFP

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Mr Macron reiterated his stance which chemical weapons use in Syria can be a “red line”

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

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

although Mr Macron said French intelligence had so far found no evidence which banned chemical weapons had been used.

His comments follow numerous reports of suspected chlorine attacks in Syria since early January.

  • ‘Chlorine attack’ on rebel-held Idlib town
  • Syria government ‘producing chemical weapons’

Nine people were treated for breathing difficulties after a bomb believed to be filled with the chemical was dropped on a rebel-held town earlier This kind of month.

The Syrian opposition said a government helicopter dropped the bomb on Saraqeb, inside north-western province of Idlib.

The Syrian government strongly denies using chemical weapons along with also says the idea does not target civilians.

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AFP

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People brought to hospitals in Saraqeb earlier This kind of month suffered breathing problems, a doctor said

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

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

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

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

In a telephone call with Mr Putin on Friday, Mr Macron expressed concern over “indications suggesting the possible use of chlorine” against civilians in recent weeks, his office said.

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Media captionAbo Rabeea says he can be still suffering coming from the chemical weapons strike in Khan Sheikhoun (May 2017)

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

although the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has continued to document the use of toxic chemicals inside country.

In April 2017, an attack on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun left hundreds of people suffering coming from symptoms consistent with use of a nerve agent.

Witnesses said they saw warplanes attack the town along with also shocking footage showed victims – many of them children – convulsing along with also foaming at the mouth. More than 80 people were killed.

In response the US carried out a missile strike against a Syrian air base.

  • Syria government behind Sarin attack – UN

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad along with also his ally Russia have repeatedly said the incident was fabricated

They say an air strike hit a rebel depot full of chemical munitions.

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