France's Macron says he persuaded Trump to keep troops in Syria


Meanwhile, leader of the far-right party Front National Marine Le Pen said with its decision to follow the United States and Britain to carry out the strikes, France lost "an opportunity to appear in the global scene as an independent power".

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. He did not give the source of his proof but it was assumed that France's respected military and external intelligence services had gathered the evidence.

The U.S., France and the United Kingdom launched the airstrikes early Saturday in a joint operation, saying it was in response to the deadly chemical attack on Syrian civilians - an attack they linked to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Political opponents had criticized Macron for drawing a red line over chemical attacks after the unfortunate precedent set by former U.S. President Barack Obama, who had put himself in a tough spot with a similar ultimatum in 2012.

European Union Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said: "The worldwide community has the responsibility to identify and hold accountable those responsible of any attack with chemical weapons".

While it is unusual for a French president to present himself as driving USA policy in military matters in the Middle East, Macron and Trump have developed a friendly relationship over the past year.

"Ten days ago, President Trump said the USA's will is to disengage from Syria. We convinced him to remain", he said.

Macron said he hopes to bring Putin's Russian Federation and Erdogan's Turkey to the negotiating table in order to find a political solution for Syria.

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The allied missile attacks in Syria were "legitimate", "limited" and "proportionate", French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said.

"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.

While Trump declared success, the Pentagon said the pummeling of three chemical-related facilities left enough others intact to enable the Assad government to use banned weapons against civilians if it chooses.

Haley said the three US goals for accomplishing its mission have been making sure chemical weapons are not used in a way that could harm USA national interests, defeating the Islamic State terror group and having a good vantage point to watch what Iran is doing.

The French president also said he had told Russian President Vladimir Putin that Moscow is complicit in the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria. however, he said that Paris considers a dialogue with Russia, Turkey, and Iran on Syria to be a necessary part of the settlement.

"We're not going to leave until we know we've accomplished those things", she said.

President Emmanuel Macron ordered the military intervention in Syria alongside the United States and Britain in response to a poison gas attack that killed dozens of people last week.