World News: France decides to strip evil Syrian tyrant Bashar Assad of its highest award, the Legion of Honor medal

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FRANCE has decided to strip evil Syrian tyrant Bashar al-Assad of his Legion of Honor medal – the country’s most prestigious award.

Assad received the award from then French president Jacques Chirac, during a ceremony at the Elysee Palace in 2001, shortly after taking power.

Bashar al-Assad greeted by French President Jacques Chirac before their meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, 2001

Around 3,000 people receive the distinction each year, in recognition for their “services rendered to France” or for defending human rights, press freedom or other causes, the Legion explains on its website.

Assad has been accused of launching a series of chemical attacks on his own people during the brutal civil war, which has ravaged Syria since 2011.

The move to strip him of the award comes days after France took part in allied missile strikes against Syrian military targets aimed at punishing Assad for an alleged chemical weapons attack earlier this month.

Emmanuel Macron’s office said in a statement: “The Elysee confirms that a disciplinary procedure for withdrawing the Leigon d’Honneur (Legion of Honour) is underway.”

Assad, pictured at the Elysee Palace after meeting with then French president Chirac in 2001
Assad pictured happily receiving Ali Akbar Velayati, top adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader, in the wake of the chemical attack
More than 70 were killed in the alleged April 7 attack, including children, with witnesses reporting victims choking and foaming at the mouth
A medical worker was pictured giving a toddler oxygen after the chemical attack in Eastern Ghouta
Bodies of victims of the chemical attack lie on the ground in Dhouma
Volunteers spraying a man with water at a make-shift hospital after the chemical attack
France joined the US and Britain to launch an allied missile attack in Syria. Pictured, Barzah’s Research and Development Centre, a chemical weapons factory, before and after the joint attack

Only a French president, the top-ranking Legion member, can decide to withdraw the award from a foreigner.

This is not the first time President Macron has stripped someone of France’s highest honour.

He withdrew the award from Harvey Weinstein, after he faced a series of accusations of sexual harassment and rape.

But Vladimir Putin is still in possession of his Legion Grand Croix award, after receiving it in 2006.

French citizens are automatically stripped of the award if convicted of crimes and receive prison sentences of up to one year.

This move comes hours after prominent Anglican vicars held a series of meetings with the Assad regime and tweeted pictures of “beautiful” Damascus.

Giles Fraser, a priest from Kennington, south-east London, joined church figures including the Rev Andrew Ashdown and peers Baroness Cox and Lord Dykes for a tour of Damascus over the weekend.

Brit Tory MP Nigel Evans blasted the leaders, especially Giles Fraser, and tweeted: ““He appears to be one of the useful idiots – people who are prepared to visit the country at this time when its being ravaged by its own regime.”

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