Statements made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development Spokesperson (Paris, November 19, 2014)

Meeting between Mr. Laurent Fabius and the Syriac Catholic Patriarch of Antioch and All the East (Paris, November 20, 2014)
United States – Meeting between Mr. Laurent Fabius and his American counterpart (Paris, November 20, 2014)
Iraq – Attack in Erbil (November 19, 2014)
Syria – Adoption of a resolution on human rights at the UN General Assembly (November 18, 2014)
North Korea – Adoption by the UN General Assembly of a resolution on the human rights situation (November 19, 2014)
Biodiversity – 6th World Parks Congress (Sydney, November 12 to 19, 2014)
Archeology – Death of Mr. Jean-François Jarrige, former Secretary-General of the Consultative Committee for Overseas Archaeological Research


Meeting between Mr. Laurent Fabius and the Syriac Catholic Patriarch of Antioch and All the East (Paris, November 20, 2014)

Mr. Laurent Fabius, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, will meet tomorrow with Ignace Youssef III Younan, Syriac Catholic Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, during his visit to France. The patriarch will also be received by the president of the Senate and by the Panel on Middle East Christians at the National Assembly.

This meeting will provide an opportunity to review the situation in the Middle East and with respect to the minorities persecuted by Daesh, notably the Syriac Catholics in Mosul and Qaraqosh. It will provide an opportunity to reaffirm France’s support for all minorities who are being subjected to the crimes of Daesh, notably Middle East Christians.


United States – Meeting between Mr. Laurent Fabius and his American counterpart (Paris, November 20, 2014)

Mr. Laurent Fabius, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, will tomorrow receive Mr. John Kerry, United States Secretary of State.

The two ministers will discuss the negotiations on the Iranian nuclear issue, a few days ahead of the deadline of November 24. They will also take stock of the tensions in Jerusalem, the peace process in the Middle East, the coalition’s action to combat Daesh as well as the situation in Ukraine.

Can you confirm that there will be a meeting between Fabius and Kerry tomorrow, Thursday, in Paris? What is the purpose of this new visit given that John Kerry was in the French capital just recently and already met with the French minister? Aren’t the Americans and the French on the same wavelength with respect to Iran? Are there plans for a press briefing tomorrow by the two ministers?

I have just confirmed this meeting and its agenda.

Iraq – Attack in Erbil (November 19, 2014)

France condemns this morning’s car bomb attack in the center of Erbil.

Erbil is the capital of the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan and is a major access point for the delivery of international humanitarian assistance. A French delegation is currently in the city in order to ensure the delivery of emergency assistance for displaced persons in Iraq.

We stand alongside the Iraqi people and authorities in their fight against terrorism.


Syria – Adoption of a resolution on human rights at the UN General Assembly (November 18, 2014)

Yesterday, the UN General Assembly adopted, by a large majority, a resolution on human rights in Syria, presented by France and a group of countries from all continents.

This text reflects the international community’s concern at the scale and seriousness of the crimes committed in Syria, for which the Syrian regime is primarily responsible, and also denounces the atrocities committed by Daesh, which compound the suffering being endured by the Syrian people. It reaffirms that the perpetrators of these crimes, some of which constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity, must be brought to justice.

France remains mobilized to combat the impunity prevailing in Syria.


North Korea – Adoption by the UN General Assembly of a resolution on the human rights situation (November 19, 2014)

France welcomes the adoption on November 19 by the UN General Assembly of a resolution on the human rights situation in North Korea. This text, put forward by the EU and Japan, was adopted by a large majority and expresses the international community’s deep concern at the tragic human rights situation in North Korea.

This resolution follows on from the work of the International Commission of Inquiry; the findings of this work, which were released in March 2014, showed serious, systematic and widespread human rights violations in North Korea and, in many cases, classified them as crimes against humanity, committed “within the framework of policies established at the highest level of government.” The resolution adopted yesterday forwards the International Commission of Inquiry’s report to the Security Council in order to ensure that the human rights violations in North Korea do not go unpunished.


Biodiversity – 6th World Parks Congress (Sydney, November 12 to 19, 2014)

The 6th International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Parks Congress, a major event held every ten years, concluded its work this morning in Sydney.

France, which enjoys a close partnership with the IUCN - which has 1,200 members in some 160 countries - was represented at this event by around 100 participants.

Five French parks are included on the Green List of Protected Areas that IUCN established on the occasion of this Congress. These include the Pyrenees National Park, Guadeloupe National Park, Iroise Marine Natural Park, Cerbère-Banyuls Natural Marine Reserve, and the Marais d'Episy Sensitive Natural Area. We welcome this decision, which highlights the quality of the work of those who manage these areas and the attractiveness of our regions.

On this occasion, France called for the prompt initiation of negotiations on an international instrument for the protection of the high seas, in accordance with the mandate issued at the Rio+20 Summit. It also underscored how the management of natural areas could contribute to the fight against climate disruption and the success of the 2015 Paris Climate Conference.


Archeology – Death of Mr. Jean-François Jarrige, former Secretary-General of the Consultative Committee for Overseas Archaeological Research

We were deeply saddened to learn of the death yesterday of Mr. Jean-François Jarrige, former Secretary-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development’s Consultative Committee for Overseas Archaeological Research. We extend our wholehearted condolences to his family and friends.

We pay tribute to this scholar who devoted his life to promoting archeology and to the diffusion of French ideas and know-how abroad. He served as secretary-general of the Consultative Committee for Overseas Archaeological Research for almost 20 years and helped to promote the common history of peoples, beyond identities and borders.

Through his knowledge of the field and his sense of public interest, Mr. Jarrige helped establish archeology as an important vehicle for promoting our scientific influence. Almost 150 archeological missions in 63 countries are therefore currently being supported.