France's Macron says he convinced Trump to stay in Syria long-term

France's Macron says he convinced Trump to stay in Syria long-term

The U.S., United Kingdom and France jointly launched strikes early on Saturday targeting the Assad regime's alleged chemical weapons research center near Damascus, a chemical weapons warehouse and a command center linked to chemical weapons located west of Homs, U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford said at a joint news conference with American Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

Macron said that failing so far to get the red lines respected had led Russian authorities to think of Western powers that "these people from the global community - they are nice, they are weak".

He continued: "Their chemical weapons production capacities have been destroyed".

Macron, speaking on French television BFM and online site Mediapart, said "we are preparing a political solution" for Syria, a day after France joined the United States and Britain in launching strikes.

"We have full worldwide legitimacy in intervening in this case", Macron said.

Our response was limited to the Syrian regime's chemical weapons capacity. Macron invited Trump to assist to Bastille day celebrations a year ago and will travel to Washington on a state visit later this month.


"I assure you, we have convinced him that it is necessary to stay for the long-term", he told veteran journalists Jean-Jacques Bourdin and Edwy Plenel, charged with the two-hour grilling.

However, reports Fox News, the White House says it has not changed its position on withdrawing USA forces from the ongoing conflict in Syria.

"The President has been clear that he wants USA forces to come home as quickly as possible", spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said. "We are determined to completely crush ISIS and create the conditions that will prevent its return".

She added: "In addition, we expect our regional allies and partners to take greater responsibility both militarily and financially for securing the region". There had been no changes to his planned trip to Russian Federation next month, he said. "We also persuaded him that we needed to limit the strikes to chemical weapons [sites], after things got a little carried away over tweets", he said.

Like Trump and British Prime Minister Theresa May, Macron has faced a domestic backlash for striking Syria without consulting the legislature, but he defended the move as well within his constitutional powers.

"The strikes against Syria are without proof, without a United Nations mandate, and against it, without a European agreement and without a vote of the French Parliament", Melenchon said on Twitter.

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