Macron and Blinken meet for the first time after the crisis over the AUKUS deal

French President Emmanuel Macron met with Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in Paris for the first time after the crisis that arose in Franco-American relations due to the situation with Australia’s withdrawal from the submarine agreement, Agence France-Presse reports with reference to the State Department.

Macron and Blinken meet for the first time after the crisis over the AUKUS deal

According to the agency, the American representative of the State Department told reporters that at the meeting there was “a mutual agreement on the possibility of deepening and strengthening coordination” between the two countries, but “there is still a lot of difficult work to be done to determine concrete solutions.”

Earlier it was reported that Blinken will visit Paris from 4 to 6 October. The purpose of the upcoming contact, both in the United States and in France, is called the definition of steps that will restore trust between the countries. The State  Department previously admitted that the head of the department could meet with French President Emmanuel Macron.

In mid-September, Australia partnered with the United Kingdom and the United States on the defense and security of AUKUS and announced its withdrawal from the submarine agreement with the French company Naval Group. The 56 billion euro agreement, dubbed the “contract of the century”, called for the production of 12 Barracuda-class attack submarines. The French Foreign Minister called Australia’s decision to break the agreement “a stab in the back” and “undermining confidence” between the allies.

Following the announcement of the AUKUS partnership, which drew criticism from Paris, French President Emmanuel Macron held conversations with his American counterpart Joe Biden. The leaders of the two countries agreed to launch consultations aimed at creating conditions for confidence and a meeting in Europe at the end of October.

The French ambassador recalled from Washington last week returned to the American capital, where Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan met with them, and then Blinken.

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