France to remain ‘military engaged’ in Middle East: Macron

Paris [France]: Noting the recent attack by the Islamic State (ISIS) in northern Syria that claimed 16 lives, French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday said that Paris would continue to remain “militarily engaged” in the Middle East region throughout the entire year.

At a time when the US is getting ready to withdraw its troops from Syria, Macron underlined that France would retain its military forces in Syria and Iraq, Anadolu News Agency reported.

“The announced withdrawal of our American ally should not deflect us from our strategic objective to eradicate Daesh,” Macron said while referring ISIS to its Arabic name.

On Wednesday, 16 people, including two US service members and two American civilians were killed in a suicide attack in Manbij in northern Syria. The ISIS later claimed responsibility for the attack.

Last December, Trump had announced that the US would withdraw around 2,000 troops from Syria, asserting that its forces had “fully destroyed” the ISIS. This decision created a rift between him and the US military.

Earlier this week, an administration official told CNN that the first US military ground equipment has been withdrawn from the war-torn country.