Statements made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development Spokesperson (Paris - March 23, 2017)
• Gabon – Meeting between Jean-Marc Ayrault and Prime Minister Emmanuel Issoze Ngondet (Paris - March 24, 2017)
• Syria / United Nations – Resumption of inter-Syrian negotiations (Geneva - March 23, 2017)
• Germany – Harlem Désir’s participation in the 4th French-German Professional Training and Apprenticeship Day (Paris - March 23, 2017)
• European Union – Presentation of the Louise Weiss Prize for European Journalism by Harlem Désir (Paris - March 23, 2017)
• Development / Education, vocational training, integration and health – Presentation by Jean-Marie Le Guen of France’s external action strategies 2017-2021 (Paris - March 23, 2017)
• Egypt – Attack against soldiers (March 23, 2017)
Jean-Marc Ayrault, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, will receive the president of the National Episcopal Conference of Congo, Archbishop Marcel Utembi, and its secretary-general, Father Donatien Nshole, on March 24.
The National Episcopal Conference plays a key role as a mediator in the current political crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Its moral authority, impartiality and legitimacy are recognized by all Congolese actors.
Jean-Marc Ayrault will reaffirm France’s support for the efforts of the National Episcopal Conference to implement the political agreement of December 31, 2016, which should give the country a transitional government and allow elections to take place by the end of 2017. The extremely troubling security and human rights situations will also be discussed.
Jean-Marc Ayrault will receive Emmanuel Issoze Ngondet. President of Gabon, on March 24.
The meeting will provide an opportunity to discuss the reforms, notably in the context of the upcoming parliamentary elections, so that these may lead to democracy for the Gabonese people.
Jean-Marc Ayrault will reiterate France’s readiness to contribute, alongside its international partners, to any efforts to support the Gabonese actors in this process.
While the inter-Syrian peace negotiations are due to resume in Geneva, France expresses its deep concern at the repeated violations of the cessation of hostilities and the obstacles that continue to stand in the way of full, unconditional and unimpeded humanitarian access to all populations in need.
It calls on all guarantors of the cessation of hostilities—primarily Russia and Iran—to exert the necessary pressure on the regime to ensure that it is upheld. The same applies to the armed groups and their supporters.
France reaffirms its full support for the mediation efforts of Staffan de Mistura, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General.
It calls on both parties to continue dialogue. The regime must enter into a constructive negotiation in good faith based on the terms of the Geneva Communiqué and UNSCR 2254, i.e. with a view toward implementing a genuine political transition.
Harlem Désir, Minister of State for European Affairs, took part in the 4th French-German Professional Training and Apprenticeship Day at the Sorbonne on March 23.
This event, organized by the French-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, involves more than 200 people, including business leaders, social partners, civil society and French, German and European institutional stakeholders and is focused on the theme "Mobility – passport to employment."
Harlem Désir underscored the importance of the mobility of apprentices and young people in professional training. He recalled the French-German pilot project on the mobility of apprentices which he launched in November 2015 together with Myriam El Khomri, Minister of Labor, Employment, Vocational Training and Social Dialogue, in collaboration with the social partners, OFAJ [French-German Youth Office] and Erasmus+.
On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, it is more critical than ever to offer young people new prospects for the future; this is one of the priorities of the efforts to revitalize the European project.
Harlem Désir, Minister of State for European Affairs, will present the Louise Weiss Prize for European Journalism on March 23 at 7:00pm at the Quai d’Orsay.
It was created in 2005 by the French section of the Association of European Journalists with the active support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development and is aimed at encouraging journalists to provide more in-depth and more instructional coverage of European issues.
It pays tribute to Louise Weiss (1893-1983), a committed journalist and European, who worked on pioneering projects to promote peace, French-German rapprochement and European unity.
This year’s winners are as follows:
- News report category: Franck Mathevon, for his documentary: "Brexit, les partisans du divorce" ["Brexit: the proponents of divorce"] (France Inter, June 2016);
- Analysis category: Marion Van Renterghem, for her series of six articles on Angela Merkel (Le Monde, August-September, 2016);
- Young journalist category: Clémentine Athanasiadis, for her report "Retour simple pour la Syrie" [One-way return for Syria] (Society magazine, September 2016);
- Special Jury Award presented by the Association of European Journalists: Stéphane Horel, for his series of investigations into the handling of the endocrine disruptors case, "Histoire secrète d’un scandale" [Secret history of a scandal] (published in Le Monde and other publications in May 2016).
On the occasion of the presentation in France of the 25th edition of the UNDP’s Human Development Report, Jean-Marie Le Guen, Minister of State for Development and Francophonie, will present, on March 23 at the Quai d’Orsay, France’s external action strategies with respect to education, vocational training, integration and health in developing countries for the period 2017-2021. He will also reaffirm the priorities of the road map for France’s action in the area of nutrition (2016-2020).
In accordance with the commitments of the Interministerial Committee for International Cooperation and Development, these documents set out France’s policies and priorities in the areas that are key to human development.
During this conference, Magdy Martinez Soliman, Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, and UNDP’s Assistant Administrator, will present the main conclusions of the 25th edition of UNDP’s Human Development Report.
France condemns the terrorist attacks which killed six Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai Peninsula on March 23.
France extends its condolences to the victims’ families and expresses its solidarity with the Egyptian authorities and people at this difficult time.
France stands alongside Egypt in the fight against terrorism.