Chemical attacks in Syria: "A clear red line for France"
Remarks to the press by Mr. François Delattre,
Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
27 June 2017
Q: Any comment on the US statement that there could be an imminent chemical attack in Syria?
I won’t comment specifically on the statement from the White House, or from the other reactions around the world. What I can tell you is that the French position on this specific issue is crystal clear as President Macron reiterated it last week, mentionning a very clear red line on our side. So that’s where we are.
It is our position because what is at stake is the future of the nonproliferation regime. So any weakness on this would open the Pandora’s box and leave the nonproliferation architecture as a whole weakened and threatened. This is something we can’t afford. And that’s why any perpetrator of chemical attacks should be held responsible and punished for such horrendous acts. So this is France’s position.
Q: Has US shared any evidence with you?
We are in constant relationship with our partners and friends.
Q: There are report about the operation in Raqqa, more than 500 civilians got killed because of the Coalition airstrikes in Raqqa while the fighters are going against ISIS there. Do you have any concerns about it, have you received any report from the Secretariat about what is going on in the city?
You know that the Coalition is doing the very best it can to avoid civilian casualties. This is a top priority for the members of the Coalition, in our common fight against terrorism. And the take over of Raqqa is a national security priority for France. What we will be doing in a few minutes is to listen to Staffan de Mistura and to see the ways to promote new phases of negotiation in Syria, which is also a key priority for us while we are seeking a democratic transition in this country as soon as possible, based on resolution 2254 and the Geneva communiqué.