France will bomb Syria if chem­i­cal at­tacks are proven Macron to strike fac­to­ries where weapons are made

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May 2017, Macron had de­clared that France would re­spond im­me­di­ately to any use of chem­i­cal weapons in Syria.

“A very clear red line ex­ists on our side: the use of chem­i­cal weapons by any­one,” Macron said, promis­ing re­tal­i­a­tion and an im­me­di­ate re­sponse from France. Ac­cord­ing to Wash­ing­ton, at least six chlo­rine at­tacks have been re­ported since early Jan­u­ary in rebel ar­eas, with dozens in­jured.

The Syr­ian gov­ern­ment in late Jan­u­ary de­nied car­ry­ing out chem­i­cal weapons at­tacks and its ally Moscow de­nounced the charges as a pro­pa­ganda cam­paign, stress­ing that the per­pe­tra­tors had not been iden­ti­fied.

While France, like the United States, sus­pects the Syr­ian regime, it says it does not yet have con­crete ev­i­dence on the na­ture and ori­gin of the at­tacks. On Wed­nes­day last week, For­eign Min­is­ter Jean-Yves Le Drian said all in­di­ca­tions sug­gest that As­sad’s forces were us­ing chlo­rine weapons in the civil war against rebel forces, but be­ing cau­tious said we haven’t com­pletely doc­u­mented this.

But De­fence min­is­ter Florence Parly was more re­served on Fri­day when asked if Da­m­as­cus had crossed the red line. “At the mo­ment be­cause we don’t know what hap­pened and the con­se­quences of what hap­pened, we can’t say we are where you say we are,” she told France In­ter ra­dio when asked about the red line Macron had set out in May.

“We have some in­di­ca­tions of the use of chlo­rine, but we do not have ab­so­lute con­fir­ma­tion, so it is this con­fir­ma­tion DON­ALD TRUMP'S long­time per­sonal lawyer ad­mit­ted on Tues­day to pay­ing porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 (`83 lakh)out of his own pocket the month be­fore the 2016 pres­i­den­tial elec­tions.

Michael D. Co­hen told the New York Times that he paid Stormy aka Stephanie Clif­ford what has been widely re­ported as ‘hush money’ while work­ing as coun­sel to the Trump Or­ga­ni­za­tion, and for which, he says, he was not re­im­bursed for the pay­ment.

“Nei­ther the Trump Or­ga­ni­za­tion nor the Trump cam­paign was a party to the trans­ac­tion with Ms. Clif­ford, and nei­ther re­im­bursed me for the pay­ment, ei­ther di­rectly or in­di­rectly,” Co­hen said in a state­ment to the Times.

“The pay­ment to Clif­ford was law­ful, and was not a cam­paign con­tri­bu­tion or a cam­paign ex­pen­di­ture by any­one.”

Co­hen called the pay­ment to the porn star a ‘pri­vate trans­ac­tion.’

Mean­while Co­hen said he gave a sim­i­lar state­ment to the Fed­eral Elec­tion Com­mis­sion af­ter a com­plaint was filed by gov­ern­ment watch­dog group Com­mon Cause.

The group sug­gested that the pay­ment was a 'in-kind con­tri­bu­tion to the Trump cam­paign,' and was paid through a limited li­a­bil­ity com­pany that was es­tab­lished by Co­hen.

The com­plaint fur­ther queried if the pay­ment was ul­ti­mately paid work that we are do­ing with oth­ers be­cause ob­vi­ously we have to es­tab­lish the facts,” she said.

Da­m­as­cus has re­peat­edly been ac­cused of us­ing chem­i­cal weapons, with the United Na­tions among those blam­ing gov­ern­ment forces for an April 2017 sarin gas at­tack on the op­po­si­tion-held vil­lage of Khan Sheikhun that left scores dead.

More than 80 peo­ple were killed in a sus­pected chem­i­cal at­tack on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun in north-west­ern Syria on April 4 , 2016.

Hun­dreds suf­fered symp­toms con­sis­tent with re­ac­tion to a nerve agent af­ter what the op­po­si­tion and West­ern pow­ers said was a Syr­ian gov­ern­ment air strike on the area.

UN has re­peat­edly ac­cused Da­m­as­cus of us­ing chem­i­cal at­tacks on civil­ians

AFP

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