France adopts Moscow's stance on Assad

  • 22/06/2017
Bashar al-Assad
Bashar al-Assad. Photo credit: Reuters

French President Emmanuel Macron says he sees no legitimate successor to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and France no longer considers his departure a pre-condition to resolving the six-year conflict.

"The new perspective that I have had on this subject is that I have not stated that Bashar al-Assad's departure is a pre-condition for everything because nobody has shown me a legitimate successor," Mr Macron said in an interview to eight European newspapers.

He said Mr Assad was an enemy of the Syrian people, but not of France and that Paris' priority was a total commitment to fighting terrorist groups and ensuring the country did not become a failed state.

His comments are in stark contrast to the previous French administration and echo Moscow's stance that there was no viable alternative to Mr Assad.