“It’s 100 per cent lies and propaganda,” Ayrault said during a visit to Beijing, responding to an exclusive AFP interview with Assad on Wednesday.
“It’s 100 per cent cruelty and cynicism.”
The French minister mirrored language used by Assad himself, who dismissed the allegation that his regime perpetrated the attack that left 87 civilians dead, including many children.
“Definitely, 100 per cent for us, it’s fabrication,” Assad said in the interview.
The Syrian leader questioned whether the attack had in fact occurred, claiming that “fake videos” and “propaganda” were being used against his government.
He also accused the United States of colluding with terrorists and “fabricating the whole story in order to have a pretext” for a cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base last week.
The French minister made the remarks during a joint press conference with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
“The reality is that more than 300,000 have died, 11 million people have been displaced or become refugees, tens of thousands have been placed in Syrian prisons and a country has been destroyed,” Ayrault said.
“That is the reality. It is not a fantasy.”