French continue to be upset after US, UK clinch deal for modern nuclear submarines for Australia, besting France's diesel sub offer
French President Emmanuel Macron expects “clarifications and clear commitments” from President Joe Biden in a call to be held later on Wednesday to address the submarines’ dispute, the Associated Press reports, citing the French presidential palace.
Macron’s office said the call, which was requested by Biden, is to discuss “the crisis of trust” that led to the unprecedented recall of the French ambassador to the U.S. last week.
Macron expects “clarifications on the American choice to keep a European ally away from key exchanges on an Indo-Pacific cooperation,” the statement said.
The Indo-Pacific defense deal between the U.S., Australia and Britain was announced last week by Biden, with France being formally informed only a few hours beforehand, according to French diplomats. The pact will see Australia cancel a multibillion-dollar contract to buy diesel-electric French submarines and acquire U.S. nuclear-powered vessels instead.
France wants an acknowledgment that talks that “should have been held” between allies before the deal was made “did not happen” and that it is raising “a matter of trust about which we need to draw together all the consequences,” according to Macron’s office.
Paris is calling for “acts, not words only,” including on “the full recognition by our American ally of the need to strengthen the European sovereignty and the importance for Europeans to greater involvement in their defense and security,” Macron’s office said.
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