Biden, Macron To Talk Amid Submarine Deal Row

Biden, Macron To Talk Amid Submarine Deal Row

Sept. 20, 2021, 9:37 p.m.

The presidents of the United States and France will speak over the phone in the coming days. It will be their first talk since a diplomatic row erupted over Australia's decision to cancel its submarine deal with France.

French government spokesperson Gabriel Attal on Sunday announced the planned call between Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron. Attal said the US leader requested the conversation.

Australia decided to scrap its plan to develop submarines with France and instead opted for US and UK technological support to acquire its first nuclear-powered submarines.

The US and UK will provide the assistance to Australia under their new security partnership called AUKUS. The three nations last week unveiled the framework, which is apparently aimed at keeping China in check.

France has recalled its ambassadors to the US and Australia in protest at the decision to terminate the Paris-Canberra deal, valued at 56 billion euros, or roughly 66 billion dollars.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Saturday that Australia had not notified his country of its decision to end the deal until shortly before it was announced.

He described the situation as a grave crisis, saying real allies talk to each other and respect one another.

Attention is focused on whether Biden and Macron will be able to stop the situation from deteriorating further and restore a degree of trust.

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