Syria crossed France's 'red line', says Macron

ANI | Updated: Apr 14, 2018 10:34 IST

New Delhi [India], Apr 14 (ANI): After launching strikes on Syria alongside the United States and the United Kingdom, French President Emmanuel Macron said that the country had crossed his 'red line'.

In a statement issued shortly after loud explosions followed by heavy smoke were reported in the Syrian capital Damascus, he said, "We can not tolerate the trivialisation of the use of chemical weapons."

He added that "the facts and the responsibility of the Syrian regime are not in doubt," concerning the April 7 Douma attack, wherein "dozens of men, women and children were massacred with chemical weapons, in total violation of international law and UN Security Council resolutions."

"The red line set by France in May 2017 has been crossed," he continued. "So I ordered the French armed forces to intervene tonight, as part of an international operation in coalition with the United States of America and the United Kingdom and directed against the clandestine chemical arsenal of the Syrian regime."

Macron further said that their response was limited to the capabilities of the Syrian regime for the production and use of chemical weapons.

It came after United States President Donald Trump said in an address to the world that he ordered precision strikes in Syria in retaliation for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's "evil and despicable" poison gas attack.

Meanwhile, British Prime Minister Theresa May said in a statement that there was "no practicable alternative to the use of force" to deter the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime.

She added that the Syrian regime had demonstrated a "persistent pattern of behaviour" when it came to the use of chemical weapons, that "must be stopped".

"We have sought to use every possible diplomatic channel to achieve this," the Prime Minister said. "This is not about intervening in a civil war. It is not about regime change. It is about a limited and targeted strike that does not further escalate tensions in the region and that does everything possible to prevent civilian casualties." (ANI)