The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry for Europe
and Foreign Affairs
Spokesperson


Paris - May 22, 2020
In this issue:

◢  Open Skies Treaty – Statement by the foreign ministries of France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Finland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Sweden (May 22, 2020)

◢  International Day for Biological Diversity (May 22, 2020)

◢  India / Bangladesh – Cyclone Amphan (May 22, 2020)

◢  Chad – Abolition of the death penalty (May 20, 2020)

 
Open Skies Treaty – Statement by the foreign ministries of France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Finland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Sweden (May 22, 2020)

We regret the announcement by the U.S. government of its intention to withdraw from the Open Skies Treaty, although we share their concerns about the implementation of the treaty clauses by Russia.

The Open Skies Treaty is a crucial element of the confidence-building framework that was created over the past decades in order to improve transparency and security across the Euro-Atlantic area.

We will continue to implement the Open Skies Treaty, which has a clear added value for our conventional arms control architecture and cooperative security.

We reaffirm that this treaty remains functional and useful. The withdrawal becomes effective within six months.

Regarding issues relating to the implementation of the treaty, we will continue to engage with Russia as was previously decided among NATO allies and other European partners to address outstanding issues such as the undue restrictions to flights over Kaliningrad. We continue to call on the Russian Federation to lift these restrictions and will continue our dialogue with all parties.

On May 21, yesterday, the U.S. president announced his intention to pull the United States out of the Open Skies Treaty. How do you view this decision?

I refer you to today's statement.



International Day for Biological Diversity (May 22, 2020)

On this International Day for Biological Diversity, France reaffirms its determination to protect ecosystems and biological diversity worldwide.

Given the threats posed by biodiversity loss and warnings by scientists and researchers, only collective mobilization at the national, international and European levels can reverse the trend and avoid permanent biodiversity loss, which also has an impact on human health.

That is why in January 2021, France will host the World Congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) - initially scheduled for June 2020 - in Marseille, as the President announced, as well as a One Planet Summit.

France will continue to work hard to ensure that the COP 15 to the Convention on Biological Diversity adopts an ambitious new global strategic framework and continues its efforts to protect 30% of the planet by 2030 as part of the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, which it co-chairs with Costa Rica. It will act with its European partners in the spirit of the EU Biodiversity Strategy.



India / Bangladesh – Cyclone Amphan (May 22, 2020)

India and Bangladesh were hit hard by Cyclone Amphan on May 20, causing several deaths and major damage.

France offers its condolences to the victims'families and to the Indian and Bangladeshi authorities.

It stands ready to respond to requests for humanitarian assistance for the populations hit by the cyclone.



Chad – Abolition of the death penalty (May 20, 2020)

France welcomes the enactment of the Chadian law permanently abolishing the death penalty in that country.

It reaffirms its steadfast opposition to the death penalty everywhere and in all circumstances. It remains resolutely committed to the universal abolition of this unjust, inhumane and ineffective punishment. It calls on all nations that still have the death penalty to establish a moratorium on it with a view to its permanent abolition.


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