US President Joe Biden will maintain high-level contacts with France to smooth things over after Wednesday’s announcement of pact AUKUS between the US, the UK, and Australia, which could undermine a defense contract between Paris and Canberra.
This was reported this Thursday by the White House spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, in her daily press conference, where she pointed out that France was informed in advance of the pact made public yesterday.
The advanced defense technology cooperation agreement between the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom has caused hurt to France due to losing the submarine building contract.
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian denounced it on Thursday, saying that the announcement by US President Joe Biden of an alliance with Australia, which involves breaking an important contract for the sale of French submarines, resembles Donald Trump’s policies.
“This unilateral, brutal, unpredictable decision is very similar to what President Trump did,” Le Drian denounced in an interview with the France Info station, insisting that “this is not done between allies” and will have consequences.
The French Embassy in Washington announced that the US-France friendship gala to be held at Ambassador Philippe Etienne’s residence on Friday evening has been cancelled.
The Gala was held to celebrate the 240th anniversary of the Battle of the Chesapeake, which the USA won with the help of the French Navy in the war of independence against England.
It has been reported that other events related to the 240th anniversary of the Battle of Chesapeake will be held.
The pact, called AUKUS by the initials in English of the three Anglo-Saxon countries, aims to strengthen cooperation in advanced defense technologies, such as artificial intelligence and long-distance surveillance, in addition to providing nuclear-powered submarines to the Australian fleet.
The United States, Australia and the United Kingdom announced the ambitious defense pact on Wednesday to take on China in the Indo-Pacific. The pact aims to strengthen trilateral cooperation in advanced defense technologies, such as artificial intelligence, underwater systems and long-distance surveillance.