“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 Drian said in a statement Friday.
France has 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.
Earlier in the week, Le Drian 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.”
“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.”
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.”