President Emmanuel Macron says France persuaded US President Donald Trump to stay in Syria and launch air strikes as punishment for an alleged chemical weapons attack. Appearing in a two-hour live broadcast, the 40-year-old leader said the US, Britain and France had “full international legitimacy to intervene” in order to enforce international humanitarian law. The allies fired missiles on Saturday at three chemical-weapons facilities in Syria to punish the regime for the alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Douma. “It was retaliation, not an act of war,” Macron said in justifying the operation a day before the French parliament was set to debate it. “Ten days ago President Trump wanted the United States to withdraw from Syria. We convinced him to remain,” he said, speaking in the majestic room of Chaillot National Theater in Paris. He said France now wants to involve Western powers, Russia and Turkey in a new diplomatic initiative to find a sustainable political solution in Syria. Macron also offered to play the role of intermediary between the United States and Russia.