The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry for Europe
and Foreign Affairs

Paris - June 2, 2020
In this issue:

◢  Visegrad Group – Videoconference between Amélie de Montchalin and her counterparts (June 2, 2020)

◢  Libya – Situation in Libya (June 2, 2020)

◢  Greece – France's contribution through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism (June 2, 2020)

◢  United States

◢  G7

◢  Iran

◢  Israel

Visegrad Group – Videoconference between Amélie de Montchalin and her counterparts (June 2, 2020)

Amélie de Montchalin, Minister of State for European Affairs attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, met yesterday via videoconference with her counterparts from the Visegrad Group countries (Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia).

Ahead of the European Council of June 19, their discussions focused on European Commission proposals concerning the recovery plan and the revision of the future multiannual financial framework for 2021-2027. The minister underscored the need for an ambitious, solidarity-based recovery plan in the context of European sovereignty. The ministers also addressed coordinating the lifting of measures on the borders of the Schengen space in a manner that respects our common values, the status of negotiations with the United Kingdom, and the need to conduct a democratic debate on the lessons to be learned from the crisis, within the framework of the Conference on the Future of Europe.

This meeting is part of an ongoing political dialogue conducted by France and its Central European partners with the goal of achieving ambitious agreements on common European priorities. In recent months, the minister has exchanged views with all of her counterparts in the region, both on a bilateral basis and as a participant in the work of the so-called Austerlitz Format with Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia on May 13.

Libya – Situation in Libya (June 2, 2020)

France welcomes the announcement by the Libyan National Army and the Government of National Accord that they have agreed to resume negotiations in the framework of the 5+5 Libyan Joint Military Commission under the auspices of the UN with a view to swiftly bringing about a ceasefire based on the document prepared on February 23 by that Commission. Following the intense efforts it has made in recent days vis-Ă -vis the Libyan parties and its international partners to achieve this initial result, France intends to do everything in its power to bring about an immediate resumption of discussions and the swift signing of a ceasefire agreement.

The discussions that are getting underway must be accompanied by an immediate de-escalation, permit the formal conclusion of a ceasefire, and lead to the implementation of the principles agreed to at the Berlin Conference early this year: a halt to foreign interference, an end to violations of the arms embargo, and the resumption of the inter-Libyan political process under the auspices of the UN.

Greece – France's contribution through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism (June 2, 2020)

Greece has requested support via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism to improve vulnerable populations’ access to primary healthcare services and limit the health risks posed by the Covid-19 pandemic amid the arrival of large numbers of migrants on its soil.

In response, France is shipping four containers of medical supplies by sea today. Departing from the port of Le Havre, this equipment will make it possible to set up a mobile clinic managed by the Greek authorities on the island of Chios. Facilitated by the Embassy of France to Greece, this operation reflects France's solidarity with Greece, which is dealing with an influx of migrants and asylum seekers.

This equipment, which should arrive in Piraeus at the end of June, is being transported with the assistance of the CMA CGM Foundation, which has a partnership agreement with the Crisis and Support Center of the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs. This is the first operation made possible under that agreement. The CMA CGM Foundation has also agreed to ship 700 kilos of medicine offered by the Tulipe association, to be used by the healthcare workers operating the mobile clinic.

In addition, the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs is continuing its support for NGOs that are developing humanitarian programs for migrants and asylum seekers on the Greek islands.

United States

What is your reaction to the use of force by U.S. authorities following several days of protests throughout the country?

The events taking place in the United States fall within the sphere of the political and social life of that country and are a matter for the American people. As a friend and ally of the United States, we are following them with the utmost attention. American authorities are now conducting a vital judicial investigation into the circumstance of George Floyd's death.


Do you support Russia's participation in the next G7 summit, as the U.S. President wishes?

The decision concerning the Russian Federation was taken in 2014 by the G7. Likewise, any new decision must be taken jointly by the G7 countries, based on the implementation of the Minsk agreement.


In your statement of May 29 on Iran, you mentioned the triggering of the JCPoA's dispute resolution mechanism and the fact that it created a space for dialogue in order to find a solution that would make it possible to preserve the agreement. Since January 14, have the six members of the JCPoA met in the specific context of that mechanism to discuss the basis for the disputes directly and in depth?

The joint commission bringing together the participants of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (PGAC - JCPoA) met in Vienna on February 26, at the political director level. It addressed all of the participants' areas of concern, and specifically the measures taken by Iran in violation of the JCPoA. Since then, the dialogue has continued intensively, despite difficulties linked to the pandemic, between JCPoA participants and on a bilateral basis between the E3, Russia and China, and Iran.


Jean-Yves Le Drian was supposed to speak to his Israeli counterpart this weekend. What came out of that conversation?

That conversation should be held in the very near future. We are in regular contact with the Israeli authorities.

France in the
United States
Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
f t YouTube Flickr Instagram