France - US - Syria

French government to present evidence to top lawmakers today on Syria's chemical attack

President François Hollande  and Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault at the Elysée
President François Hollande and Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault at the Elysée Reuters/Benoit Tessier
2 min

 The French government is due to present evidence to senior lawmakers that it claims proves Syria’s Bashar al-Assad’s regime used sarin gas in a deadly attack, prompting calls for military intervention.


 French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault is expected to present evidence to senior lawmakers today that shows the Syrian regime was indeed responsible for the chemical weapons attack, that has promted the United States, the United Kingdom and France to consider military action.

The move comes as US President Barack Obama is lobbying Congress this week to support strikes while the British parliament has rejected participating in any joint military action.

French government sources said evidence proving the regime’s involvement in the attack would be provided at a meeting with Ayrault today at 5 pm Paris time.

"It will be a set of varying evidence that will clearly show the regime [Assad] as responsible for the 21 August chemical attack” said a senior government source.

"We are going to give the MPs everything we have – classified until now – to enable every one of them to take on board the reality of this unacceptable attack," said Ayrault earlier today.

On Wednesday, the French parliament will hold a debate on military action in Syria.

So far, over 111,000 people have been killed since the civil war began in March 2011.

French President Françcois Hollande vowed to "punish" Assad for the alleged attack that Washington claims killed more than 1,400 people.

In France, the president can order military action without parliamentary approval but some lawmakers have urged Hollande to put the issue to a vote.

Daily newsletterReceive essential international news every morning