France's Macron deeply regrets Trump decision on troops in Syria

N'DJAMENA, Dec 23 (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday he deeply regretted U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

In an abrupt policy shift, Trump announced on Wednesday that Washington would withdraw the roughly 2,000 U.S. troops in Syria, upending a pillar of American policy in the Middle East and alarming U.S. allies.

"I very deeply regret the decision made on Syria," Macron said during a news conference in Chad.

"To be allies is to fight shoulder to shoulder. It's the most important thing for a head of state and head of the military," he said. "An ally should be dependable."

Macron stressed the importance of the work of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, which has captured large parts of northern and eastern Syria from Islamic State.

"I call on everyone ... not to forget what we owe them," he said.

U.S. officials justified the decision by saying Islamic State had been defeated.

(Reporting by Madjiasra Nako; Writing by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Hugh Lawson and Alison Williams)

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Before and after images show the US strike on Syria
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Before and after images show the US strike on Syria

Director, Joint Staff, U.S. Marine Lt. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., shows a damage assessment image of the Him Shinshar Chemical Weapons bunker as he briefs the Pentagon in Washington, DC, on April 14. 2018.

The Pentagon said Saturday that a joint U.S.-British-French operation against Syria's regime had 'successfully hit every target,' countering assertions from Russia that dozens of missiles were intercepted.

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense shows the damage assessment at the Him Shinsar chemical weapons storage site before (L) and after (R) following U.S., French and British forces launched strikes agains Syria on April 14, 2018.

President Donald Trump and his British and French allies on Saturday hailed their joint strikes in Syria in response to its alleged use of chemical weapons, warning Damascus that any repetition would be met with renewed firepower.

JOSE ROMERO/AFP/Getty Images

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense shows the damage assessment at the Barzah research and development center before (L) and after (R) following U.S., French and British forces launched strikes agains Syria on April 14, 2018.

JOSE ROMERO/AFP/Getty Images

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense show the damage assessment at the Him Shinsar chemical weapons bunker before (L) and after (R) following U.S., French and British forces launched strikes agains Syria on April 14, 2018.

JOSE ROMERO/AFP/Getty Images

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