For France's Macron, Syria red lines were credibility test

Macron insists strikes won't block rail overhaul

He stated: "Ten days ago, President Trump was saying the United States of America had a duty to disengage from Syria".

Appearing live on French television BFM and online investigative site Mediapart, the 40-year-old leader said the US, Britain and France had "full global legitimacy to intervene" with the strikes, to enforce worldwide humanitarian law.

Macron said in a written statement that the attack had been limited to Syria's chemical weapons facilities and said the facts and the responsibility of the Syrian regime were beyond doubt. The U.N. Security Council met to debate the strikes, but rejected a Russian resolution calling for condemnation of the "aggression" by the three Western allies. "With those strikes we have separated the Russians and the Turks on this".

Both Putin and Rouhani agreed the missiles strikes had "seriously damaged" the prospect for a political settlement in Syria, the statement said.

If the red line banning the use of chemical weapons was crossed again, there would be another intervention, he said, while adding: "I think the lesson will have been learnt".

British Prime Minister Theresa May said in London that the West had tried "every possible" diplomatic means to stop Assad from using chemical weapons.

On Saturday, France in coordination with the US and the United Kingdom conducted a series of military strikes against the regime of Bashar al-Assad after it accused the latter of being responsible for the chemical weapons attack on Douma, Eastern Ghouta on April 7th. Images taken in the immediate aftermath of the April 7 attack show babies, children and adults, lying on the ground, some foaming at the mouth.

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After a first phone call with U.S. President Donald Trump that night, a series of painstaking daily meetings with defense and foreign affairs officials took place to check the authenticity of images and information coming from Syria.

"There has been repeated and proven violations of the treaty", he said.

Mr Macron maintained that he "never said" either the United States or France would stay engaged long-term in Syria in a military sense - hours after saying in a live Sunday interview that he had managed to change Mr Trump's mind on withdrawing troops.

The allies fired missiles early on Saturday at three chemical weapons facilities in Syria to punish the regime for the alleged attack on the town of Douma.

"So there is no practicable alternative to the use of force to degrade and deter the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime", May said.

Macron said on Sunday that the operation against Syria was "legitimate" and conducted within the worldwide community framework.

"The U.S. mission has not changed - the President has been clear that he wants United States forces to come home as quickly as possible", press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.

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