Main menu


The ice has melted.. a new contact between Biden, Macron and Harris will visit Paris

US President Joe Biden and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron spoke by phone, Friday, to continue their efforts to resolve French-American differences in the wake of the Australian submarine crisis, and the White House confirmed that Vice President Kamala Harris would visit Paris soon.

The two presidents discussed "the necessary efforts to strengthen the European defense force while ensuring integration with NATO," according to what the US presidency said in a statement.

Macron has made building a truly European defense force a priority for the last six months of his term.

Among other topics raised by the two leaders are the situation in the Sahel region and cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, according to the White House.

France wants to "strengthen US support for anti-terror operations led by European countries in the Sahel region," an informed French diplomatic source said in October during US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken's visit to Paris.

The phone call, Friday, comes before a meeting between Biden and Macron during the Group of Twenty summit in Rome at the end of October, to be followed by the visit of US Vice President Kamala Harris to Paris, which was confirmed by the White House and the Elysee.

Biden said in a tweet that he appreciated the conversation with Macron and looked forward to meeting him in the Italian capital to assess the "many areas of cooperation" between the two countries.

And the White House announced, Friday, that Harris will visit Paris on November 11 and 12, where she will meet the French president.

The US presidency stated that Harris and Macron "will discuss the importance of the transatlantic relationship for peace and security in the world, and they will stress the importance of our partnership in addressing the challenges facing the planet such as Covid-19 and the climate crisis, through to issues of the coast and the Indo-Pacific region."

The call between the two leaders and Harris' visit come as part of the process of re-warming relations between Paris and Washington after the crisis caused by the September 15 announcement of a new defense alliance between the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom.

That partnership called "Ocos" angered France, because it blew up a huge contract linking it with Australia to supply submarines.

The last contact between the US and French presidents took place on September 22, and it was the first since the diplomatic crisis that erupted against the backdrop of Australia canceling the deal to buy French submarines after announcing the establishment of a new partnership between the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom on September 15 that included supplying Canberra with submarines. American nuclear powered.

Against the background of this crisis, Macron summoned the French ambassador to Washington, and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian compared Biden's unilateral approach to the practices of former US President Donald Trump, "but without tweets."

Although Biden made no apologies for engaging in secret negotiations to sell nuclear submarines to Australia, he acknowledged that the crisis could have been avoided through "open consultations among allies".

Since then, US officials have been seeking to restore water to France, and US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken visited Paris earlier this month and held a bilateral meeting with Macron.

On the September call, Macron said he saw a big pledge by Biden to respect French-led efforts to bolster European defense.


table of contents title