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Published on February 4, 2011
Interview given by Michèle Alliot-Marie, Ministre d’Etat, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, to “France 2” television (excerpts)

Paris, February 2, 2011


Q. – A word, please, on the position of French foreign policy on the development of this situation in Egypt.

THE MINISTER – This very morning, President Sarkozy called on Egypt to embark without delay on a peaceful transition process. President Sarkozy urged it to be done without violence, and we see this evening that he didn’t make that appeal for nothing.

Q. – Do you condemn this violence in the counter-demonstration?

THE MINISTER – I condemn all violence, whatever its origin, and I call on everyone to show restraint.

I’m deeply shocked that people can risk death for expressing their ideas, wherever they are in the world. For years I’ve been engaged in politics, upholding freedom and human rights, wherever it may be. Losing a life to defend ideas really is something which is totally traumatic and appalling; it’s a loss of human dignity.

There are problems in Egypt. I hope there will be developments in Egypt that respond to the Egyptian people’s economic, political and social aspirations. It’s something natural – we live in a world that’s moving, we must also take these aspirations into account; but it must be done without violence. Today, the transition process must be carried out without violence, lawfully and without delay. (…)./.

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