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Macron is justified on Syria and does not see “coagulation” of discontent

Ⓒ AFP – FRANCOIS GUILLOT – | President Emmanuel Macron (c) during a television interview with RMC-BFM journalists Jean-Jacques Bourdin (d) and Mediapart, Edwy Plenel (L), at the Palais de Chaillot, Paris, April 15, 2018

Emmanuel Macron justified on Sunday the strikes carried out in Syria and refuted the idea of ​​a “coagulation” of discontent in France, during a television interview conducted in an sometimes electric atmosphere.

During 2:40, the President of the Republic was subjected to a flood of questions, some of which seemed more like the questions of a debate, Jean-Jacques Bourdin (BFMTV and RMC) and Edwy Plenel (Mediapart), two reputed journalists for their pugnacity.

This unprecedented tone for a presidential interview was the opposite of the one, more posed, Thursday on TF1, which launched the media offensive Emmanuel Macron to mark the first anniversary of his arrival at the Elysee.

“I hear all the rage,” but “there is not that much” a “coagulation of discontent,” said the president. Referring to the railway workers’ dotted strike, “it is an anger that I understand, which I respect but which is linked to a decision we make, that I assume, a reform that we will carry through to the end”, a- he developed.

He recalled that if he had “from the day of (his) investiture” raised the need to “reconcile the country”, it would not be done “overnight”.

Ⓒ POOL/AFP – FRANCOIS GUILLOT – | President Emmanuel Macron (c) during a television interview with RMC-BFM journalists Jean-Jacques Bourdin (d) and Mediapart, Edwy Plenel (L), at the Palais de Chaillot, Paris, April 15, 2018

“I feel like you the injustices”, insisted Emmanuel Macron face the insistent questions of the two interviewers on the economic and social reforms taken for a year, for which he is described as “president of the rich” by his opponents.

– No new taxes –

He defended the partial abolition of the ISF to “keep talent, attract and reinvest in our economy.”

Taxation will not increase during the five-year period and “there will be no creation of a new local tax, nor a national tax,” assured the head of state.

He also said there would be “no savings on the hospital in this five-year period” and that he would announce “early May” decisions to try to respond to the crisis of emergency services.

Ⓒ AFP – – | Photo taken from the Twitter account of the French Minister of the Armenian Florence Parly showing a French military plane, April 14, 2018 when Western targeted strikes targeted Syria

Regarding the SNCF, Emmanuel Macron confirmed that the State would resume “gradually” part of the debt of the SNCF “from 1 January 2020” when the group would be reformed, without advancing any amount. This debt should then reach fifty billion euros.

For the host of the Elysee, students are “often in the minority” among those blocking universities to challenge the reform of access to higher education. He denounced “inadmissible” violence.

While new clashes took place Sunday in Notre-Dame-des-Landes, Emmanuel Macron furthermore held that the “anger” of the opponents of the expulsion of the Zad was “not legitimate”, and that “all what will have to be evacuated will be.

– “Not war” in Assad –

The president has long justified the strikes carried out in the night from Friday to Saturday against chemical weapons production sites of the regime of Bashar al-Assad, saying it was “the international community that has intervened.” He said, however, that France had “not declared war on the regime”.

The president explained that he now wanted to “convince” the Russians and Turks to come to the negotiating table, insisting that he wanted to “speak with everyone” on the Syrian file. “We regained credibility with the Russians” after the strikes, he said.

Mr. Macron also said, “Ten days ago, President Trump said: The United States of America has a vocation to disengage from Syria, we have convinced it, we have convinced it that was necessary to stay there (…), I reassure you, we convinced him that it was necessary to remain in the duration “.

The mission of US forces deployed in Syria “has not changed” and President Donald Trump wants them to return to the United States “as soon as possible,” said Sunday the White House.

Throughout the interview, Jean-Jacques Bourdin and Edwy Plenel began their questions with “Emmanuel Macron” and not “Mr. President”, marking a break with the uses of presidential interviews of recent decades.

Describing the exercise of “new” and “democratic we need”, Emmanuel Macron sometimes criticized the two journalists for “amalgam” or “nonsense”. Addressing Edwy Plenel, he did not hesitate to refer to Mediapart’s troubles with the IRS. “It’s totally petty,” the reporter replied.

At the end of the show, the president answered “chick” to start it again in a year.

The first political reactions focused more on form than substance.

“This format of interview is (…) much better than the complacent or connivent exercises to which the 5th Republic has accustomed us,” reacted former PS candidate in the presidential Benoît Hamon.

But Christian Estrosi, the mayor of Nice, saw “a caricature of interview”. Because “in seeking to lower the presidential office, the journalists actually lower the function of journalist”.

“Incredible press interview, we no longer listen to the answers, we wait for the questions,” tweeted Jean-Luc Mélenchon (LFI) during the show.

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