French President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday (10/31/2021) that Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison had lied to him about secret negotiations between Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom in the face of an alliance that ensured Franco’s collapse. – Australian agreement for the sale of submarines.
“Do you think Scott Morrison lied to you?” asked an Australian journalist in the corridors of the G-20 summit in Rome. “I don’t think about it, I know,” Macron responded, according to a video posted on social media.
The announcement of the strategic alliance between these three countries, to rival China in the Indo-Pacific region, caused Canberra to cancel a multi-million dollar contract to buy French submarines.
In his first conversation on Thursday since the crisis erupted in mid-September, Macron told Morrison that this represented a breakdown in the “relationship of trust” between the two countries.
Also on Sunday, when asked about Macron’s accusation, the Australian prime minister replied: “I don’t agree with that (…). It’s not true.”
“We had a joint dinner,” Morrison added. “As I have said on numerous occasions, I have made it very clear to him that the option of a conventional submarine does not satisfy Australian interests.”
The submarine crisis went further and affected the relationship between France and the United States. Paris even recalled its ambassador in Washington, who returned to his post days later, for consultation.
During a meeting in Rome on Friday, US President Joe Biden did not apologize to Macron, but said he believed “France was told long ago that the contract would not take place.”
gs (afp, efe, reuters)
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