London (AFP) – After heavy criticism from France and China, Britain’s new foreign secretary, Liz Truss, has defended her country’s security pact with the United States and Australia.
“Liberties must be defended, so we are building strong security relationships around the world,” the conservative politician wrote on Sunday in the Telegraph. After nuclear-powered submarines, this alliance also wants to expand the use of artificial intelligence for defense. Great Britain demonstrates its commitment to security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
After Brexit, the British government wants to focus on close relations with the Asian region, and also in order to become more independent from Europe. Truss, who previously had to negotiate post-Brexit trade deals, took over from her predecessor Dominic Raab a few days ago as part of a cabinet reshuffle.
France sees NATO relations as tense
France sees relations within NATO as strained by the row over a failed submarine deal with Australia. “You also have to question the strength of the alliance with the United States,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Saturday evening in France 2.
“In a true alliance you talk to each other and respect each other, that was not the case.” What happened is a burden on the new strategic concept of NATO. Le Drian spoke of lies and dishonesty. “It doesn’t work at all, it means there is a crisis.”
At the request of President Emmanuel Macron, France had already recalled its ambassadors from the United States and Australia for consultations the previous evening. Australia announced, Thursday, its desire to acquire nuclear-powered submarines in the framework of a new security alliance with the United States and Great Britain, and that it would refrain from purchasing French submarines, which were closed in 2016. The decision, which France learned about, Le Drian said Saturday evening, before An hour from the announcement, it means the loss of an agreement worth 56 billion euros for France.
Le Drian called on Europe to work together to better defend its interests after the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban and the submarine conflict, and that was an urgent matter. “If Europeans do not realize that if they want to remain a part of history, they must come together and defend their interests together, their fate will be very different and we cannot go in this harmful direction.”
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