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Statements made by the Ministry of Foreign and European Spokesperson (Paris, November 30, 2011)

Published on December 1, 2011

North Korea – Nuclear activities

By declaring further progress in its enrichment activities and activities related to the construction of an experimental light water reactor, Pyongyang is continuing to violate its obligations relating to the suspension of its nuclear activities.

The revelation in November 2010 of the North Korean enrichment activities already constituted a serious violation of the non-proliferation regime, in addition to the many gray areas in the North Korean program. Pyongyang must shed full light on its enrichment activities and provide the IAEA with access to all of its nuclear facilities.

We urge Pyongyang to resume dialogue and to comply with international law and to dismantle the North Korean nuclear program in a complete, verifiable, and irreversible manner, as required by UN Security Council resolutions 1718 and 1874.

Summoning of the Iranian chargé d’affaires in Paris

This morning, the Ministre d’Etat’s CabinetDirector summoned the chargé d’affaires of the Iranian Embassy to Paris.

He strongly condemned the attack and the unacceptable ransacking of British diplomatic compounds in Tehran and the lack of response on the part of the police.

He underscored the responsibility of the Iranian authorities to ensure the security of diplomatic property in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

The CabinetDirector reaffirmed France’s wholehearted solidarity with the United Kingdom.

Norway says that it has closed its embassy in Tehran today due to security concerns. Is France considering closing its embassy?

We express our wholehearted solidarity with our British partners. Yesterday, the Ministre d’Etat condemned, on behalf of France, the unspeakable acts that took place in Tehran.

He has just spoken on the telephone about this matter with his British counterpart, Mr. William Hague.

The EU Foreign Affairs Council will take up this matter tomorrow and will discuss the follow-up to these very serious events.

The Ministre d’Etat’s CabinetDirector has just summoned the Iranian chargé d’affaires in Paris. He reaffirmed to him in the strongest possible terms France’s condemnation of the violence perpetrated yesterday in Tehran against the British embassy.

We are of course monitoring developments in the situation on the ground.

World AIDS Day (December 1)

On the occasion of World AIDS Day, France contemplates the memory of the more than 30 million people who have succumbed to the virus over the last 30 years. It reaffirms its commitment alongside the EU and the entire international community in the fight against AIDS and the need to continue the efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

France has made the fight against HIV/AIDS one of its priorities. It is one of the world’s leading financial contributors. The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs therefore devotes:

- More than €360 million per year to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria;

- €110 million per year to the International Drug Purchase Facility (UNITAID);

- More than €2 million to the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)

- Almost €45 million per year to bilateral aid to combat HIV/AIDS, notably through the ESTHER hospital cooperation initiative and the projects financed by the French Development Agency (AFD).

France will uphold its global commitments, despite the difficult economic and budgetary situation.

These efforts are working: the Global Fund to Fight AIDS programs are currently enabling 3 million people, 55% of whom are in sub-Saharan Africa, to benefit from antiretroviral treatment. UNITAID made it possible to lower the cost of pediatric antiretroviral treatments by almost 50% between 2008 and 2010.

France continues to promote the fundamental values that protect HIV-positive people from discrimination and stigmatization, and which notably guarantee the freedom to travel, the freedom of residence, access to good quality treatment, equality and gender equality. It remains convinced that the fight against HIV/AIDS isn’t just a matter of resources, but also a matter of equality. In this context, it is particularly attached to the protection of young girls.

Syria

A UNHRC special session on Syria is scheduled to take place on Friday in Geneva. Will France take any initiatives?

France called for the holding of another special session of the Human Rights Council.

Given the Commission of Inquiry’s damning report, it demands the adoption of a strong resolution, endorsing the Commission of Inquiry’s recommendations, unequivocally condemning the atrocities and demanding that Syria cooperate with the United Nations and the Arab League in order to put an end to the obstruction of access to humanitarian assistance.

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