PARIS – France, America’s oldest ally, recalled its ambassador to the United States on Friday in an unprecedented outburst of anger that overshadowed decades of previous divisions.
The relationship came to a crossroads after the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom ignored France in creating a new Indo-Pacific security agreement.
France had never called its ambassador to the United States before, according to the French Foreign Ministry. Paris also remembered his envoy to Australia.
France has been angry since the announcement on Wednesday of this security association, dubbed Aukus, and Australia’s cancellation of the contract that provided for the supply of a dozen conventional submarines for several tens of billions of euros.
Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said the French decision, at the request of President Emmanuel Macron, is justified by the “exceptional gravity” of the announcements made by Australia and the United States.
He argued that Australia’s decision to abandon a large purchase of French conventional submarines in favor of nuclear submarines built with American technology was “unacceptable behavior among allies and partners.”
Ambassador Philippe Étienne wrote on Twitter that the announcements “directly affect our vision of our alliances, our partnerships and the importance of the Indo-Pacific to Europe.”
The Biden administration has been in contact with French officials about the decision to call Etienne to Paris, according to a White House official. The official, who requested anonymity to discuss the sensitive diplomatic issue, added that the administration regretted that France had made the decision and was seeking to engage with France in the coming days to resolve disputes on the issue. The security pact between the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.
The decision represents a shocking change for France under centrist Macron, who, after an increasingly bitter relationship with former President Donald Trump, warmly shook Biden’s hand at a G7 summit in June and confirmed that “America is back. “.
This reminder is his boldest foreign policy decision to date during a four-year presidency during which he sought to strengthen France’s diplomatic footprint and role in shaping European policies, and to unite France’s neighbors around his vision of a Europe less dependent on the umbrella of the United States Army.
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