Macron receives US Secretary of State during submarine dispute
French President Emmanuel Macron receives US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. This is the first high-level French-US meeting since relations between the two countries deteriorated dramatically last month due to a row over the sale of French submarines to Australia.
The meeting was not on the agenda of Blinken’s two-day visit to Paris. He was only talking with fellow Frenchman Jean-Yves Le Drian. According to the French government, the scheduled meeting is supposed to help restore confidence. But according to those involved, there is still a lot of work to be done before the French and American presidents are likely to be able to meet at the end of October.
Paris was furious when Australia canceled a contract to sell French submarines to that country worth more than €77.5 billion. Australia suddenly seemed to be entering into a new strategic alliance with the United States and Great Britain. France has not been surveyed or aware of this.
Not only are the French angry at the loss of the submarine deal, but they feel deceived and betrayed by the Americans, Australians and British. The new alliance called AUKUS has been negotiated in the strictest secrecy for a long time. The Americans and British will assist the Australians with nuclear submarines within that alliance.
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