The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry for Europe
and Foreign Affairs
Spokesperson


Paris - April 25, 2019
In this issue:

◢  Netherlands – Visit by Amélie de Montchalin (April 25, 2019)

◢  Health – World Malaria Day (April 25, 2019)

◢  Ukraine

◢  Saudi Arabia

◢  China

◢  Libya

 
Netherlands – Visit by Amélie de Montchalin (April 25, 2019)

Amélie de Montchalin, Minister of State for European Affairs, attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, will visit the Netherlands today.

She will meet with Stef Blok, Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, to prepare for the summit in Sibiu on May 9 and the European Council in June. The discussions will notably focus on the UK's withdrawal from the EU, the future of the euro zone, the Multiannual Financial Framework, the rule of law, migration and EU expansion. Amélie de Montchalin will reaffirm the need for the EU to determine its own interests, to promote them and to act accordingly, as President Macron underscored in his open letter addressed to European citizens on March 4 setting out his proposals for a European renaissance.

They will also discuss our bilateral relations, notably preparations for the upcoming French-Dutch seminar on European issues which takes place every year, alternately in France and the Netherlands.

During this visit, the minister of state will meet with Ladislav Hamran, President of Eurojust, and Catherine de Bolle, Executive Director of Europol, to discuss police and judicial cooperation in Europe, as well as the consequences of Brexit on these two agencies.

The minister of state will also meet with representatives of Dutch think tanks.



Health – World Malaria Day (April 25, 2019)

While the incidence rate of Malaria had decreased by 18% during the period 2010-2017, progress in the fight against malaria has stalled in the previous three years, with the number of cases per 1000 population remaining at 59. Almost 435,000 people still die of malaria every year, more than 90% of whom on the African continent. Cases are concentrated in 10 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Nigeria with 25% of cases and the DRC with 11% of cases.

In the face of this challenge, and in accordance with its commitments in support of the Sustainable Development Goals, France reaffirms its determination to combat malaria.

  • In Lyon on October 10, 2019, it will host the Replenishment Conference of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and is mobilizing its public and private partners for the 2020-2022 budget cycle, with the aim of raising $14 billion.

    France is the second largest contributor to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which has allocated more than $11.4 billion to malaria control programs in around 100 countries since 2002. In 2017, the Global Fund notably distributed 197 million insecticide-treated nets and treated 108 million cases.

  • France is a founding member of and the largest donor to UNITAID, whose malaria grant portfolio will reach $400 million in 2020. UNITAID's efforts notably include preventative treatment, vaccines, protection against the vectors of the disease and the improvement of diagnosis and treatment.
  • France also contributes to the Global Fund through the 5% Initiative to strengthen the capacities of French-speaking countries, and has committed more than €3.5 million since 2011 through technical assistance missions, long-term projects and the funding of operational research programs. The French Development Agency, the pharmaceutical industry, civil society and research also contribute to our country's mobilization.

France is hosting the Roll Back Malaria event today in Paris - a global partnership to combat malaria bringing government officials and civil society together.



Ukraine

What do you think of Moscow's decision to facilitate the granting of Russian citizenship to inhabitants of the separatist regions of Ukraine?

France and Germany, co-mediators of the Normandy Format, condemn the publication by Russia of a decree aimed at facilitating the granting of Russian citizenship to populations in certain areas of Ukraine's Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts.

These regions, like all of Donbas, are part of Ukraine's territory.

Facilitating the granting of Russian citizenship to the Ukrainian citizens who live there is contrary to the spirit and objectives of the Minsk accords. This decision does not facilitate efforts to resolve the conflict.



Saudi Arabia

Riyadh is under fire following the execution of 37 Saudis for "terrorism." An EU spokesperson raised "serious doubts about respect for the right to a fair trial" and highlighted the risk of sectarian tensions in this country. What is France's response?

We share the serious concerns expressed by the spokesperson for the European External Action Service and several European partners regarding these executions. France is opposed to the death penalty under all circumstances and in all places, including Saudi Arabia.



China

Did a French warship - the Vendémiaire - cross the Taiwan Strait on April 6, prompting Beijing to suspend France's participation in a major naval parade on April 6 on Tuesday, as several American sources are claiming?

Please refer to the Ministry of the Armed Forces.



Libya

According to reports from our correspondents at the White House, President Trump may have expressed in a conversation with Khalifa Haftar his support and the fact that he supported him in deposing Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj. What is France's response and position?

Over the last few weeks, France has repeatedly expressed its support for Mr. Sarraj's Government of National Accord, the only government recognized by the international community within the framework of the political process in Libya.

It calls for a ceasefire and the immediate resumption of dialogue under UN authority with a view toward finding a political solution.


France in the
United States
Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
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