The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
and International Development
Spokesperson


Paris - June 22, 2016
In this issue:

◢  Economic diplomacy – Meeting between Matthias Fekl and the coordinators for the priority export sectors (Paris - June 22, 2016)

◢  India / Non-proliferation – India's candidacy to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)

◢  North Korea – Launching of two ballistic missiles (June 22, 2016)

◢  Israel / Palestinian territories – Death of a Palestinian teenager (June 21, 2016)

◢  International Criminal Court – Conviction of Jean-Pierre Bemba (June 21, 2016)

◢  UN / Human Rights – Election of Nicole Ameline to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (New York - June 21, 2016)

◢  Cyprus / Forest fires – French assistance (June 22, 2016)

 
Economic diplomacy – Meeting between Matthias Fekl and the coordinators for the priority export sectors (Paris - June 22, 2016)

Matthias Fekl, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, the Promotion of Tourism and French Nationals Abroad, will today receive the seven coordinators for the priority export sectors: Gérard Wolf, for the "enhancing urban living" sector, Jean-Patrick Lajonchère, for the "healthcare products and services" sector, Xavier Duportet, for the "emerging technologies" sector, Jean-Emmanuel Sauvée, for the "French-style tourism" sector, Catherine Chavrier, for the "better nutrition" sector, Isabelle Giordano, for the "entertainment and culture" sector and Jean Ballandras, for the "renewable energy" sector.

The coordinators are appointed by the minister of foreign affairs and international development to help—on a voluntary basis—develop and promote French exports. Their expertise enables them to identify the barriers to exporting that French firms may face, especially SMEs.



India / Non-proliferation – India's candidacy to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)

France and India have been strategic partners since 1998 and share common goals with respect to the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery. These goals were reaffirmed during President Hollande's visit to India from January 24 to 26, 2016.

France believes that India's entry into the four multilateral export control regimes (NSG, MTCR, the Australia Group, the Wassenaar Arrangement) will strengthen international efforts to combat proliferation. India's participation in these forums will make it possible to better regulate the export of sensitive goods, whether these include nuclear, chemical, biological, ballistic or conventional materials and technologies.

Consistent with its active and longstanding support for India's entry into the NSG as a full member, France calls on its members, who are meeting on June 23 in Seoul, to reach a positive decision.



North Korea – Launching of two ballistic missiles (June 22, 2016)

North Korea reportedly launched two ballistic missiles from its east coast. These launches, if confirmed, would constitute a further violation of the UN Security Council resolutions, which prohibit North Korea from conducting any launches using ballistic missile technology

In the wake of the nuclear test in January, the launching of a missile in February and the launching of short-range missiles over the last few weeks, North Korea is determined to continue on this path of confrontation. The North Korean ballistic program, which goes hand in hand with the development of a nuclear arsenal, constitutes a serious threat to regional and international peace and security.

France reaffirms the need for the international community as a whole to fully implement the UN Security Council resolutions, especially UNSCR 2270 of March 2, 2016.

We again urge North Korea to immediately comply with and implement, without preconditions, the Security Council resolutions, which call for the complete, irreversible and verifiable dismantling of its nuclear and ballistic programs. It must immediately refrain from any action likely to increase tensions in the region.



Israel / Palestinian territories – Death of a Palestinian teenager (June 21, 2016)

France is saddened by yesterday's death, in the West Bank, of a Palestinian teenager killed by Israeli army fire. Two other Palestinian teenagers were injured.

We offer our condolences to the victim's family and stand by all those who were injured.

The Israeli authorities have opened an investigation, and France hopes that investigators will get to the bottom of this tragedy.



International Criminal Court – Conviction of Jean-Pierre Bemba (June 21, 2016)

On June 21, the International Criminal Court sentenced Jean-Pierre Bemba, the former head of the Movement for the Liberation of the Congo, to 18 years in prison.

For the first time, the International Criminal Court established the criminal liability of a defendant, as a military commander, for crimes committed by his troops in a third country under the "commands responsibility" principle. This is also the first court decision recognizing the use of rape and sexual violence as war crimes.

France reiterates its resolute commitment to combating impunity and its support for the International Criminal Court, with which we urge all nations to cooperate.



UN / Human Rights – Election of Nicole Ameline to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (New York - June 21, 2016)

France welcomes Nicole Ameline's election to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women on June 21 in New York.

The 23 experts serving on this committee oversee the progress made by the 189 States parties in implementing Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. The committee examines the situation on a country-by-country basis. Individuals may make requests and provide information.

France reiterates its commitment to defending women's rights, promoting male-female equality, and combating gender-based violence.



Cyprus / Forest fires – French assistance (June 22, 2016)

Since June 18, Cyprus has been dealing with a major forest fire in the Troodos Mountains, between Paphos and Nicosia, which has killed two firefighters and is threatening homes.

France stands by the Cypriot people and authorities at this difficult time. As part of the European civil protection mechanism, the French Civil Defense has dispatched three planes, which are operational as of today. Our embassy in Nicosia is in constant contact with the Cypriot authorities.

France offers its condolences to the loved ones of the firefighters who lost their lives fighting this fire.


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