President Francois Hollande has said that France is ready to recognise a provisional Syrian government in place of Bashar al-Assad's regime, calling on opposition forces to form one as soon as possible.
Many western and Arab nations have called for Assad to step down, but this announcement makes France the first western power to formally recognise the Syrian opposition as the legitimate leaders of the country.
Hollande's announcement comes after another horrifying week of violence, with hundreds killed in and around the capital city of Damascus.
Although supportive of the opposition, France also made clear that it will not intervene militarily unless there's an international mandate.
Learn more: The New York Times has more on the latest bloodshed, and what international powers might do to stop it.
Sources: Guardian, Al Jazeera, Associated Press, New York Times