France Claims AUKUS Alliance Shows Need for “European Strategic Autonomy”

Following the announcement that Australia has ditched its submarine deal with France, in favour of the new ‘AUKUS’ alliance with the UK and the US, French ministers Jean-Yves Le Drian and Florence Parly reacted with fury last night at being “excluded” from the new security partnership:

“The American choice to exclude a European ally and partner such as France from a structuring partnership with Australia, at a time when we are facing unprecedented challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, whether in terms of our values or in terms of respect for multilateralism based on the rule of law, shows a lack of coherence that France can only note and regret…The regrettable decision that has just been announced … only reinforces the need to make the issue of European strategic autonomy loud and clear.”

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is now set to host a summit on European defence alongside Macron, having already made clear that the EU needs to show the “political will” to build its own armyAs for the AUKUS alliance, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace appeared on this morning’s media round to insist “we have no intention” of upsetting the French. A radical change from the last thousand years of British foreign policy if true…

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mdi-account-multiple-outline Ursula von der Leyen
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