French President Emmanuel Macron ordered French Ambassador to the United States Philippe Tienne to return to Washington next week. Macron has been in communication with US President Joe Biden to defuse tensions over Australia’s nuclear submarines.
The talks were the first communications between Macron and Biden since Australia’s announcement of canceling a contract to buy French submarines as part of defense cooperation with Britain and the United States.
“Macron has decided that the French ambassador will return to Washington next week. He will then begin intensive work with senior US officials,” the joint statement said.
Macron and Biden also pledged to resolve the issue. The two of them are said to be meeting in Europe at the end of October 2021.
The meeting will seek “to reach a common understanding and maintain momentum in this process,” the statement said.
He added: “Both leaders agreed that the situation would benefit from open consultations among allies on matters of strategic importance to France and our European partners.”
It said Biden also agreed on the need for a stronger European defense to complement NATO, a key idea that Macron has repeatedly raised.
“The United States also recognizes the importance of a stronger and more capable defense of Europe, which makes a positive contribution to transatlantic and global security and complements NATO,” the statement said.
Previously, in a virtual press conference on Wednesday (15/9), Australia, Britain and the United States announced their trilateral cooperation, AUKUS.
In its first program, AUKUS plans to develop nuclear-powered submarines for the Australian fleet. This cooperation has generated a negative response from various parties, such as China and France.
France later recalled ambassadors to the US and Australia after the two countries cooperated on nuclear submarines.