France backs tougher EU sanctions on Syria: ministry
France wants the European Union to impose tougher sanctions on Bashar al-Assad's Syrian regime in response to his harsh crackdown on a revolt against his rule, the foreign ministry said Friday.
France was reacting after EU officials confirmed they are planning to add more firms and a dozen people to a list of targeted asset freezes and travel bans that already includes Assad and key allies.
"France supports an expansion of the European sanctions against Syria to economic entities," spokesman Bernard Valero told reporters in Paris, adding that Syrian banks and private firms linked to regime figures could be hit.
He said discussions were under way with fellow EU states ahead of a meeting on Monday of the bloc's foreign affairs committee.
© 2011 AFP