Syria operation legitimate, within global community framework: France's Macron

British Lionhearts will be hoping to move up into first place in the European group

A day after France joined the United States and Britain in launching unprecedented strikes against regime targets, Macron yesterday insisted the intervention was legitimate and urged worldwide powers to now push for a diplomatic solution to the brutal seven-year war.

He said France now wants to involve Western powers, Russian Federation and Turkey in a new diplomatic initiative to find a sustainable political solution in Syria.

Saturday's strikes on Syria - in which the US, France and Britain launched 105 missiles targeting three chemical weapons facilities in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack in Douma on 7 April - were the first major military operation since Macron's election in May a year ago.

French president Emmanuel Macron has claimed that he convinced Donald Trump to keep US forces in Syria "for the long term" during the run-up to air strikes on Syrian weapons sites by French, US and United Kingdom forces on Saturday. Macron insisted the Western allies had "complete global legitimacy to act" in Syria.

French President Emmanuel Macron and U.S. President Donald Trump attend the traditional Bastille Day military parade on the Champs-Elysees in Paris, France, July 14, 2017. "We convinced him to remain".

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.

Macron added that Russian Federation, which backs Assad politically and militarily, had paved the way for the Syrian government's actions.

Syria operation legitimate, within global community framework: France's Macron
Syria operation legitimate, within global community framework: France's Macron

The U.S. -led operation won broad Western support. "We can not tolerate the banalisation of the use of chemical weapons, which is an immediate danger for the Syrian people and for our collective security".

"We have seen a regime appearing to think they can use chemical weapons with impunity".

Speaking to French broadcaster BFMTV, Le Drian said there was "no doubt" about the suspected chemical attack in Douma. "This is not about intervening in a civil war".

As for his allies, Macron suggested France played a pivotal role in changing Trump's mind on the need to stay involved in the conflict.

"These strikes against Syria engage us in a way with unpredictable and potentially dramatic consequences", she warned on Twitter.

After another series of calls, with Angela Merkel of Germany and again with Trump and Britain's Theresa May, Macron ordered his military to send Rafale warplanes to strike Syria's chemical weapons facilities. That did not mean military strikes would continue.

More news: Monday, April 16 Morning Forecast Discussion

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