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    A boy walks on the rubble of damaged buildings in the rebel held besieged Douma neighbourhood of Damascus, Syria March 8, 2017

    France's Participation in Syria Strikes to Have Bad Legacy - National Front

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    YALTA (Sputnik) - France's participation in the recent missile strike on Syria was a very "reckless" decision that will only have negative consequences for Syria in terms of escalating the situation in the war-ravaged country that is still battling terrorists, National Front Secretary-General Nicolas Bay said in an interview with Sputnik.

    "Military escalation is always to be feared. I had the opportunity to tell President Macron on Tuesday, because he was at the European Parliament that this operation he launched was very incautious… It could only have a negative consequence," Bay said on the sidelines of the IV Yalta International Economic Forum in Crimea.

    Bay believes that "it would be the honor of France" to fight against terrorism along with the forces of Syrian President Bashar Assad and Russia.

    READ MORE: Marine Le Pen Questions French Strike on Syria, Recalls Colin Powell's Tube

    When asked whether he believes that the missile strike was carried out to cover any traces of the alleged Duma chemical attack, Bay noted that "it is indeed astonishing and also doubtful" that the strike was carried out just days before the experts of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) were to come to Syria to investigate into the alleged chemical incident in the town of Douma.

    On Thursday, US Department of State spokesperson Heather Nauert said that the United States had credible evidence that Russia and Syria were preventing the OPCW team from reaching the Syrian city of Douma, where an alleged chemical attack took place on April 7.

    Earlier this month, a number of media outlets and Western countries accused Damascus of using chemical weapons in Douma. The Syrian government and Russia have refuted the allegations, saying that the attack in Duma was staged by militants and the White Helmets to influence public opinion and justify possible intervention.

    On April 14, the United States, France and the United Kingdom carried out a missile attack on a number of targets in Syria, including the facilities in Barzeh and Jamraya, in response to the alleged attack in Duma. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, a total of 103 cruise missiles were launched by the United States and its allies, 71 of which were intercepted by Syria’s air defense systems. Moscow called on the OPCW to launch an investigation into the reported chemical attack.

    On Relations With Russia

    Bay called on the French leadership to maintain a balanced position in relations with Russia and not to unconditionally follow the US line.

    "[French President Emmanuel Macron] should take the example of [French statesman] General [Charles] De Gaulle's position which was a balanced one. So France should be a point of equilibrium. We should be able to speak with both Donald Trump and [Russian President] Vladimir Putin and others… Russia intervened in Syria to put an end to this conflict and thanks to Russia this conflict is about to be over," he noted.

    The politician also expressed hope that "this alignment with US positions will end" and called for the removal of Western sanctions against Russia since they are not serving the economic interests of many EU states.

    READ MORE: UK Police Probing for Alleged Skripal Case 'Persons of Interest' — Reports

    According to Bay, the EU solidarity with the United States in the issue of economic pressure on Russia serves the interests of Washington, but not Europe.

    Commenting on the incident with poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the United Kingdom, Bay said that "Western countries have made very brave accusations without impartial and rigorous inquiries."

    Various economic and diplomatic sanctions against Moscow were introduced by the West in 2014, when the conflict in the Ukrainian eastern Donbas region erupted, and Crimea rejoined Russia as a result of a referendum. Moscow has repeatedly said it is not a party to the Ukrainian conflict, and insisted that the referendum in Crimea had been carried out in line with the international law. As a response measure, Russia has introduced a food embargo against countries which had targeted it with sanctions.

    In early April, the United States unveiled new sanctions against Russia over the country’s alleged global destabilization efforts. A number of Russian businessmen and companies controlled by them, as well as a number of high-ranking officials were specifically targeted in the restrictions.


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