Biden and Macron reconcile in Rome after dispute over submarines

The presidents of the United States and France,Joe Bidenand Emmanuel Macron sealed their reconciliation this Friday during the first face-to-face meeting in Rome after the serious dispute over the submarines.

The presidents gathered at the headquarters of the French embassy to the Holy See for an appointment marked by smiles and handshakes.

"We have to look to the future", launched Macron, upon receiving the presidentBidenin the elegant residence Villa Bonaparte.

The French president praised beforeBidenthe "concrete decisions" taken that "generate a process of trust" between France and the United States.

For his partBidenrecognized that the United States was "clumsy" in the case of the submarine contract that earned him the ire of France, a partner who considers "extremely valuable"he told accredited journalists.

The case was detonated when the president of the United States,Joe Biden, announced a new Indo-Pacific alliance with Australia and the United Kingdom, which torpedoed a mega-submarine contract between Paris and Canberra. The French authorities denounced a "stab" and one "trust break".

France and the United States want to definitively turn the page in Rome of the Franco-American crisis over Australian submarines that even cooled relations between the United States and the European Union.

– Between the G20 and COP26 –

The two leaders decided to meet in the Italian capital on the occasion of the G20 summit, on the 30th and 31st, and the COP-26 conference on climate change in early November in Glasgow (United Kingdom), which they attend in person.

The French and American presidents had already held telephone conversations on September 22 about the bilateral crisis caused by Australia’s decision to renounce the contract with France and decide to buy submarines from the United States.

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On that occasion "they compromised" to rebuild trust between Paris and Washington, and the US president acknowledged that "open consultations between partners" they would have avoided these tensions.

Macron then decided that the French ambassador to the United States, the experienced diplomat Philippe Etienne, would return to Washington, a gesture to ease the most serious diplomatic crisis between the United States and France since the "no" French to the Iraq war in 2003.

Biden, who hopes to consolidate his alliance with Europe on this trip, after the distance generated by his predecessor Donald Trump, also met that Friday with the head of the Italian government, Mario Draghi.

During that meeting they agreed on "the usefulness of developing a European defense", as the Italian government explained in a statement.

The crisis with France opened a debate in several countries of the European Union about the need for greater European sovereignty in defense matters to free itself from the American umbrella.

Those bilateral meetings serve as the backdrop for the G20 during which major economic powers are expected to announce an agreement to impose a minimum tax on multinationals.

On the other hand, uncertainty about the COP26 climate summit that begins on Monday persists, despite the fact that world leaders are under unprecedented pressure to decarbonize their economies and chart humanity’s path away from catastrophic global warming.

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