French president sets red line on Syria chemical weapons

French president sets red line on Syria chemical weapons
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French President Emmanuel Macron drew a red line on Syrian chemical weapons use on Monday in a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"Any use of chemical weapons would results in reprisals and an immediate riposte, at least where France is concerned," Macron said in a joint news conference, according to Reuters.

Macron's remarks follow President Trump's first official visit to Europe and the Middle East as president, a trip that left some European allies unsure of support from his administration.


German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Europe could not remain dependent on others for help, adding that Germany and France had to boost their cooperation.

"We Europeans have to take our destiny into our own hands," she said.

Former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaMinneapolis mayor on Floyd: 'Ultimately his life will have bettered our city' Lawmakers react to guilty verdict in Chauvin murder trial: 'Our work is far from done' Obamas praise Floyd jury, urge more action: 'We cannot rest' MORE faced harsh criticism for failing to enforce a similar red line on Syrian chemical weapons when he was in office. In 2012, Obama said that “a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized,” and that crossing such a line would change his thinking on military engagement.

When Syrian President Bashar Assad used chemical weapons a year later, Obama did not intervene. Instead, a deal was struck at Putin’s behest to clear chemical stockpiles out of Syria.

In April, following another Syrian chemical attack, Trump ordered a strike on the airbase from which the warplanes that deployed chemical weapons were launched.

The United State and France have both opposed Assad in Syria, while Russia has continued backing him in the civil war that has resulted in over half a million deaths and sparked a refugee crisis in the region and parts of Europe.