Syria - Q&A - Excerpts from the daily press briefing (05.02.18)

Q – What is France’s reaction to the intensification of Russian strikes in the rebel-held sectors of Idlib province?

A – France strongly condemns the indiscriminate bombardment of Idlib province by the Syrian regime and its allies, especially when it targets residential areas and civilian infrastructures, and particularly medical facilities. It is incumbent on all parties to respect international humanitarian law.

In this regard, the states that serve as guarantors for the Astana agreement, providing for the establishment of a ceasefire and de-escalation areas, especially in Idlib, bear particular responsibility.

There will be lasting stability in Syria only on the basis of a negotiated political solution consistent with the orientations of Security Council resolution 2254.

Q – Several recent articles are raising the question of the Quai d’Orsay’s involvement in the Lafarge affair. How do you respond to that?

A – Neither the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs nor any of his employees have been implicated in the legal proceedings currently under way.

It is our duty to help shed light on that case.

In this regard, our diplomats are testifying as witnesses, as they had contacts with the Lafarge group through their official duties. Likewise, we are making available to the courts the information or documents they have requested.

The French authorities have always made it perfectly clear that sanctions against Syria, which prohibit any transactions with Daesh, must be scrupulously respected. We accept no form of collusion with terrorist groups, in Syria or elsewhere.

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