PARIS - France "will not shirk its responsibilities" in response to a suspected chemical attack in Damascus by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad, a French diplomatic source said on Tuesday.
"The use of chemical weapons, which has been going on for several months now and has now been used for the first time massively, is unacceptable," the source said, shortly before President Francois Hollande was to address an ambassadors conference in Paris on foreign policy.
The source said that in France's view there was no doubt that Syrian forces were behind last week's attack.
French business magazine Challenges reported earlier on Tuesday that France's Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier was being sent to the eastern Mediterranean from its current berth in the southern French port of Toulon.
The Defence Ministry and spokespeople for the armed forces and navy all denied the report.