On Thursday the United States pledged to move from words to “deeds” to overcome the crisis with France, but at the same time admitted, like Paris, that it will take “time”.
The crisis between Paris and Washington erupted on September 15, after US President Joe Biden announced the birth of a new defense alliance between Australia, the US and Britain, expanding the scope of nuclear submarine technology. United States to include Australia, as well as cybersecurity technologies, artificial intelligence, and undersea naval capabilities.
One of the first fruits of this alliance was the overthrow of a huge agreement concluded by Canberra with Paris to buy French-made submarines and replace them with American nuclear-powered ones.
On Wednesday a phone call took place between Biden and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, at the conclusion of which the two presidents announced “commitments” to restore trust between their countries after the Australian submarine crisis.
In this long-awaited phone call, the two presidents tried to find a solution to the most serious diplomatic crisis between the United States and France after the French rejection of the war. in Iraq in 2003.
And US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken announced Thursday that his country realizes that reconciliation with France after the submarine crisis “takes time” and requires “hard work” from Washington.
“We know this will take time and hard work, and will be translated not only with statements, but also with actions,” said Blinken. in a press conference on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
Blinken touched on the “cooperation and coordination” that Biden and Macron pledged to deepen during their phone conversation on Wednesday, saying the two allies could “do more” and “do a better job”.
The US secretary spoke at length about the importance of France, especially in the Indo-Pacific region, where Washington announced in mid-September an alliance with Australia and the United Kingdom that triggered the crisis.
The US Secretary of State held a meeting Thursday morning in New York with his French counterpart, Jean-Yves Le Drian. “We have been friends for a long time – said Blinken of Le Drian -. I appreciate him very much”.
He told Le Drian Blinken during a bilateral meeting at the UN headquarters in New York on Thursday that getting out of the crisis between their two countries over the Australian submarine issue takes “time” and “action”, Paris announced.
In a statement released after the meeting, the French Foreign Ministry said that Le Drian “recalls that a first step was taken during the phone call between the two presidents (Biden and Macron) on Wednesday, but specified that, coming out of the crisis between our two countries it takes time and action “.
The statement adds that Le Drian “has agreed to stay in close contact with Blinken “in order to” restore trust “between the two parties, without providing further details.
The meeting took place at the headquarters of the French mission on the 44th floor of the United Nations building and lasted about an hour.
The meeting took place behind closed doors and was surrounded by maximum secrecy, away from microphones and cameras, and the French mission refused to comment on what happened between the two men.
In recent months, Le Drian has made no secret of his admiration for his American counterpart, who is fluent in French and loves France, the country in which he spent his adolescence.
The two ministers had a “good conversation” on Wednesday evening on the sidelines of a meeting of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, which was held in the Security Council room to discuss the situation. in Afghanistan after the Taliban movement took control of the nation.
The White House and the Elysee Palace claimed in a joint statement that holding “open consultations between allies on matters of strategic importance to France and European partners would have avoided this situation”, which is the result of the most serious diplomatic crisis between Washington and Paris since the French rejection of war in Iraq in 2003.
The statement adds that “President Biden has expressed his permanent commitment in this regard”, noting that the two presidents “have decided to initiate an in-depth consultation process aimed at guaranteeing conditions that guarantee confidence and propose concrete measures to achieve common objectives”.
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