Underwater dispute ‘is not just a French problem’, says EU top diplomat

The recent submarine dispute between France and its allies the US, UK and Australia has highlighted the need for improved communication and the importance of a European military force acting as a compliment to NATO, he told NATO on Thursday. Jowharthe EU’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell.

Borrell called for a system to be put in place to prevent a repeat of a diplomatic row that saw France withdraw its ambassadors to the US and Australia last week over Canberra scrapping a multi-million dollar French submarine deal.

Following a telephone conversation between French President Emmanuel Macron and US President Joe Biden on Wednesday, Paris agreed to send back its retired ambassador to the US.

Speaking to Jowharafter his meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Borrell said the submarine dispute had implications for the European Union “as a whole.” Borrell noted that Australia, the US and the UK, or AUKUS, announced the removal of the French deal on the same day the EU was prepared to launch its own Indo-Pacific plan.

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