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Egypt/Syria/Deauville Partnership

Published on November 28, 2011
Reply given by Alain Juppé, Ministre d’Etat, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, to a question in the National Assembly

Paris, November 23, 2011

The deterioration of the situation in Egypt is deeply worrying. The French government has expressed its concern and condemnation in the face of the violence and has called for dialogue and, above all, the continuation of the electoral process.

The Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces announced yesterday that this process was going to continue, with a general election followed by a presidential election and the adoption of a new constitution. We support this progression towards a transfer of power to the civilian authorities.

Allow me to expand on this a little. We can’t both call for elections – the foundation of democracy – and not accept the result of those elections. We can’t start from the principle that any party referring to the Muslim religion is a party we can’t associate with.

That’s why our diplomacy is setting itself two goals: trust but also vigilance.

Trust towards these regimes in transition that we’re trying to help. In Kuwait 48 hours ago, I chaired the Deauville Partnership, which is making progress and has enabled us to draw up action plans for the main countries.

But also vigilance, to recall the red lines we want to see respected. That’s our language towards Tunisia, and Libya, who’s forming her government.

Finally, a word about Syria, where the savage crackdown is continuing. We’re now working in close liaison with the Arab League and Turkey. This very afternoon I’m going to meet the interim Chairman of the Syrian National Council, Burhan Ghalioun.

I’d like to finish by saying there’s also cause for hope. In Kuwait, at the Forum for the Future that I co-chaired with the Kuwaitis, we talked about freedom of expression, freedom of religion, freedom of association, and all the countries present – including all the Arab countries of the Gulf – expressed their support./.

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