Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson
(excerpts)

(Paris, December 10, 2007)

[Please note that only the original French text issued by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs may be considered official.]


EU/AFRICA SUMMIT

The European Union-Africa summit was held in Lisbon on December 8 and 9. The 53 African countries and 27 European countries adopted three documents: a strategic partnership, a plan of action for 2008-2910 and a final statement. These documents provide a comprehensive framework for cooperation, integrating notably the peace and security dimension between Europe and Africa. They pave the way for a new political partnership going beyond the traditional relationship between donors and recipients of development assistance.

France will work to implement the strategic guidelines defined in these documents, especially during the French presidency of the Council of the European Union. We will commit ourselves in particular to implementing the peace and security partnership. The president spoke on this subject, in particular to call for the deployment of the European force in Chad and the Central African Republic.

In the face of concerns expressed by African countries about the negotiation of economic partnership agreements (EPAs), the European Commission reaffirmed the need to conclude interim deals in the trade in goods by January 1, 2008 so as to avoid any disruption of trade. It proposed holding further meetings with the six ACP regions in coming months. The negotiation of complete EPAs (including services and investments) will be continued in 2008.

The summit was an opportunity to address sensitive issues such as migrations and the human rights situation. On this point the European Union addressed a firm, clear message to President Mugabe disapproving his human rights policy and practices.

(…)

LIBYA/FRANCE

Q - David Martinon says that Muammar Qaddafi’s program, apart from this appointments at the Elysée, is the Quai d’Orsay’s responsibility. So can you give us more details about his movements this week?

Colonel Qaddafi will be welcomed today at Orly airport at 2 p.m. by the minister for immigration, integration, national identity and co-development, Brice Hortefeux.

His meetings with President Sarkozy will be presented to you by the Elysée spokesman.

For the rest, since his program isn’t completely finalized, I suggest you contact the Libyan Embassy.

IRAQ

Q - Can you confirm that the minister intends to set in place a plan for the reception of Iraqi nationals who are Christian, and that this question is to be decided by Matignon this week? Can you tell us more about the plan?

The project you’re referring to is currently under study between ministries.

(…)

IRAN

Q - A Frenchman has been killed in Iran. Could you tell us about the circumstances surrounding his death?

We confirm that a French citizen died in the city of Isfahan on December 9.

As soon as our embassy in Teheran was informed, it contacted the local authorities for information about the circumstances in this tragedy. Our consul is currently in Isfahan to review the situation with the local authorities

We’re also in touch with our deceased compatriot’s family.

(…)./.

Embassy of France, December 10, 2007