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France, U.S. Agree To Move Forward On Key Issues

Published on 12 February 2014

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by Jane Morse


Washington, D.C.

The United States and France have agreed to move forward on key issues having to do with security, trade, the environment and global development, President Obama said at a February 11 joint press briefing at the White House with French President François Hollande.

“We’re standing shoulder to shoulder on the key challenges to global security,” Obama said on the second day of the French president’s three-day state visit.

Obama noted U.S.-France agreement in ending Iran’s nuclear program and destroying Syria’s chemical weapons. As for the ongoing violence in Syria, Obama said France and the United states will continue to strengthen the moderate opposition and call on the international community to stem the flow of foreign fighters into Syria.

France and the United States also agree that they, along with the European Union, have an important role in supporting a final agreement between Israelis and Palestinians, Obama said. “And we also agreed,” Obama said, “to continue our cooperation on Mali and the Central African Republic, where leaders and communities need to show the courage to resist further violence and to pursue reconciliation.”

Obama announced the launch of a new economic dialogue to expand trade, increase the competitiveness of U.S. and French businesses, spur innovation and encourage new entrepreneurs. He noted that Hollande’s next stop will be to the U.S. technological center in California known as Silicon Valley. That visit, Obama said, “underscores our commitment to new collaborations in science and technology.”

Obama said the two countries have agreed to continue pursuing the ambitious Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. “We need to get this done,” Obama said, “because an agreement could increase exports by tens of billions of dollars, support hundreds of thousands of additional jobs both in the United States and the European Union, and promote growth on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Both nations have agreed to keep expanding their clean-energy partnerships to fight climate change, Obama said. “And even as we take steps at home to reduce carbon emissions, we’ll work to help developing countries move to low-carbon growth.” The 2015 United Nations climate conference in France, Obama said, “will be an opportunity to forge a strong global agreement that reduces greenhouse-gas emissions through concrete actions.”

Obama said the United States and France are also making progress in their cooperative efforts on food security and nutrition and in the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other infectious diseases.

“Standing together and using our freedom to improve the lives of not only our citizens but people around the world is what makes France not only America’s oldest ally, but also one of our closest allies,” Obama said.

Obama said he was honored to accept Hollande’s invitation to visit France in June to mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day. “I was there for the 65th anniversary, and it was an extraordinary experience,” Obama said. “I’m looking forward to returning to honor our remarkable veterans and to reaffirm this extraordinary alliance.”



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Posted 2014-02-12 09:42:00