“A great opportunity to rebuild something substantive” but Australia must prove itself: French Ambassador

French ambassador Jean-Pierre Tebaud told the National Press Club that he felt betrayed by Australia’s actions on submarine trading because France had entrusted an important element of national security to Australia.

Thebault, who was speaking at the press club, pointed out on Monday that the scope of commitment to Australia was unprecedented in France.

“There has never been a range and sensitivity that France has promised to transfer,” Tebaud said.

“When you agree to transfer the technology of your country’s core defense capabilities, which is an important element of national deterrence, you entrust your partner with an important element of your own national security. There can be no strong signs of. “

France Australia
On August 25, 2019, French Ambassador Jean-Pierre Tebaud, who was in charge of preparing for the G7 Summit at the time, speaks on his mobile phone while working in Biarritz, southwestern France. (LudovicMarin / AFP via Getty Images)

The ambassador also said he emphasized the centrality of future submarine programs, given the top-level joint communiqué that the two countries agreed on just weeks before the announcement of AUKUS.

Quoting Prime Minister Scott Morrison himself, Tebaud said, “The deception was intentional … the way it was dealt with was clearly stabbed from behind.”

The ambassador also speculated that France could have provided Australia with nuclear technology for submarines, but Paris was never asked.

“Since March 2020, the Australian Government has not consulted with us at any time, at any level, about the options for nuclear power generation and the benefits of promoting nuclear power,” he said.

Defense Minister Peter Dutton said on Thursday that France had “advanced” and “it was time to admit that we had made a decision in our country,” and the ambassador’s comment did not chord with the Morrison government. Hmm. Best interests. “

Epoch Times Photo
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (R) and Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton support the national anthem at the Honorary Cordon on September 15, 2021 in the Pentagon, Arlington, Virginia (Kevindich / Getty Images).

“No one in Scott Morrison intends to apologize for it,” he said.

Dutton also accused the French government of “taking a stance” before next year’s presidential election.

“The French are scheduled for elections in April. You understand all of that attitude,” Dutton told 2GB radio. “The Chinese Communist Party is taking a specific course. We all need to work together to ensure peace and stability in the region.”

“Any blip related to it, frankly, set aside any concerns, hurt feelings, to focus on the bigger issue of ensuring that we protect and protect our country. You need to, “he said.

Nevertheless, the French ambassador left the door for Australia’s compensation explicitly open.

But he claims the ball is in an Australian court.

“It’s up to the Australian Government to tell us what they mean when they say they are honest,” Thebault said.

Crispin Lovere