France cancels DC event as ties with US quickly sour

Ties have quickly deteriorated between Washington and Paris after a recent US deal between the UK and Australia excluded France.

Less than 24 hours after the US announced a deal with the UK to provide Australia with nuclear technology for submarines, France lashed out at what it called a “lack of coherence.”

And despite US Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying France was a vital partner during a meeting with his Australian counterpart on Thursday, France chose to push ahead and cancel an event in Washington celebrating bilateral ties.

The New York Times cited a French official in Washington saying the event was scheduled to take place at the French Embassy and aboard a French frigate in Baltimore. According to the NYT, the top French naval officer was in Washington for the event to be held on Friday, but he will return to Paris.

The three-way deal between the US, Australia and the UK to “help safeguard the peace and security of the Indo-Pacific” not only excluded France but also led to Australia backing out of a $40 billion deal previously signed to acquire French submarines.

France’s former ambassador to the US called the move a “stab in the back.”

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