October 17, 2021

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France recalls ambassadors to US and Australia in response to AUKUS nuclear submarine pact – Fox News

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France recalled its ambassadors to the United States and Australia in response to a pact signed by the two countries along with the United Kingdom that the French referred to as a stab in the back. 

“At the request of President Macron, I have decided to immediately recall our ambassadors to the United States and Australia to Paris for consultations,” French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drain said in a statement Friday. 

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France has expressed outrage after an announcement this week of a pact between Australia, the United Kingdom, and the U.S. that will provide nuclear submarines to Australia and scrap an agreement previously made to send French-made submarines to Australia.

“The abandonment of the ocean-class submarine project that Australia and France had been working on since 2016 and the announcement of a new partnership with the United States aimed at studying the possibility of future cooperation on nuclear-powered submarines constitute unacceptable behavior among allies and partners; their consequences affect the very concept we have of our alliances, our partnerships, and the importance of the Indo-Pacific for Europe,” the statement added.

FRANCE ISSUES ANGRY RESPONSE TO NUCLEAR SUBMARINE DEAL BETWEEN US, UK, AUSTRALIA

Earlier in the week, Le Drain told a French radio station that the pact, known as AUKUS and widely perceived as a challenge to China’s presence in the region, was a “stab in the back” and that France had been “betrayed.”

Le Drain also compared President Biden to former President Trump.

“This brutal, unilateral and unpredictable decision reminds me a lot of what Mr. Trump used to do,” Le Drian said. “I am angry and bitter. This isn’t done between allies.”

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White House press secretary Jen Psaki denied that the move had created a “regional divide” and said that France was notified of the deal prior to the announcement.  

A White House official told Fox News that the Biden administration “regrets” France’s decision but “will continue to be engaged in the coming days to resolve our differences.”

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