Statements made by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson [July 24, 2023]

Statements made by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson [July 24, 2023]

Statements made by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson [July 24, 2023]

Fiji – Catherine Colonna’s visit to Suva (July 25, 2023)

On July 25, Catherine Colonna will be in Suva, Fiji. This will be the first visit to that country by a Minister of Foreign Affairs and follows President Macron’s trip to Oceania, which reflected France’s wish to become more engaged in the region.

The Minister will meet with the Prime Minister of Fiji, Sitiveni Rabuka, and will express our desire to step up our dialogue with that country, which shares a maritime border with New Caledonia and is therefore France’s neighbor.

She will meet with the Deputy Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, a major regional organization that fosters cooperation among its members – the countries and territories of the Pacific Islands – including New Caledonia and French Polynesia, as well as Wallis and Futuna.

Italy – Visit by Chrysoula Zacharopoulou (July 24, 2023)

Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, Minister of State for Development, Francophonie and International Partnerships, attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, is taking part in today’s UN Food Systems Summit in Rome. With Russia blackmailing global food security, the Minister of State will underscore France and Europe’s commitment to the most vulnerable countries, reflected by our increase in food aid, the doubling of our contribution to the World Food Program, and the establishment of dedicated initiatives such as the Food and Agriculture Resilience Mission (FARM).

The Minister of State will also take part in a high-level session devoted to school meals, where she will emphasize the positive results obtained by the School Meals Coalition co-chaired by France and Finland; she will call for stepping up our ambitions ahead of the first global meeting that will be held in Paris this October. In line with the recent Summit for a New Global Financing Pact, Ms. Zacharopoulou will reiterate the importance of financial issues at a high-level session on financing food systems, and will call for an ambitious replenishment of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

She will also meet with the President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP), and the Director-General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Lastly, the Minister of State will meet with Italian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Edmondo Cirielli.

Greece – Wildfires (July 24, 2023)

France expresses its absolute solidarity with Greece as it deals with the wildfires that have been burning for the past several days.

France is mobilizing its efforts to provide support to French nationals and tourists who wish to leave Rhodes ahead of schedule. The Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs’ Crisis and Support Center is in touch with the Association of Tour Operators and airlines to cover the needs of tourists on the ground and to bolster transportation capacity to accommodate those who wish to leave the island.

Working with Greek authorities, a team from the French Embassy in Greece was dispatched to the Rhodes airport to direct our citizens and facilitate the departure of those who wish to leave the island. French nationals may contact this team at the following number, if necessary: 00-30-210-339-12-00. The Greek crisis center may also be reached at the following numbers: 00-30-210-368-12-59 and 00-30-210-368-13-50.

France once again thanks the Greek authorities who are providing professional, effective support to foreign nationals.

Ukraine – Condemnation of Russian strikes targeting Odesa (July 24, 2023)

France utterly condemns the latest round of Russian missile and drone strikes in the Odesa region, which have left several dead and wounded, led to the destruction of a grain hangar and damaged the Transfiguration Cathedral.

By deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure and sites within a city that was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site this past January, Russia is committing a double violation of international humanitarian law.

The Minister visited Odesa in January, the very day that it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to express France’s support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and the preservation of its extraordinary heritage.

After jeopardizing the Black Sea Grain Initiative and withdrawing from the agreement concluded under the auspices of the UN, Russia is once again intentionally increasing global food insecurity by striking port and agricultural infrastructures that are vital to supplying the most vulnerable countries.

France will continue to assist populations affected by this food blackmail in order to mitigate the consequences of the Russian aggression. It will also continue its support for the Ukrainian courts and the International Criminal Court to combat impunity for the crimes committed by Russia. And it will continue to assist Ukraine with rebuilding and preserving its heritage.

Lebanon – Jean-Yves Le Drian, the President’s Special Envoy to Lebanon, traveling to Lebanon (July 25-27, 2023)

Jean-Yves Le Drian, the President’s Special Envoy to Lebanon, will be making a second trip to Lebanon from July 25-27.

Jean-Yves Le Drian’s first trip, which took place from June 21-24, gave him the opportunity to meet with representatives of all the political parties that hold seats in the Lebanese Parliament. He also met with the political, religious, and military authorities there.

The President’s Special Envoy to Lebanon then traveled to Saudi Arabia from July 10-12, before heading to Qatar, where he took part in a meeting on Lebanon with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the U.S., and Egypt on July 17. He then returned to Saudi Arabia on July 18.

This second trip to Lebanon is part of Jean-Yves Le Drian’s mediation and good offices mission. Its goal is for all the relevant stakeholders to create favorable conditions for a mutually agreed upon solution to emerge on holding presidential elections, which constitutes an essential step in the re-establishment of the political institutions that Lebanon so urgently needs in order to begin its recovery.

Cambodia – Legislative elections (July 23, 2023)

France takes note of the results of the recent legislative elections held in Cambodia. We regret that these elections took place in the absence of the main opposition party, the Candlelight Party, which was not authorized to register for them, to the detriment of the elections’ pluralistic nature.

We call for the release of the members of the opposition party who are being detained and urge the Cambodian authorities to respect the fundamental rights that are necessary for the re-establishment of democracy, in accordance with the provisions of the 1991 Paris Peace Agreements and the Cambodian Constitution.


Who represented France at the International Conference on Development and Migration held in Rome yesterday by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni?

France was represented by the French Ambassador to Italy.

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