France is très furieux with Australia right now. Its leaders are publicly tearing into ours, and President Emmanuel Macron has even recalled the French ambassador from Canberra — a highly unusual move among allied nations.
The diplomatic dispute comes after Australia reneged on a $90 billion deal to buy conventional French submarines, opting instead to strike an arrangement with the USA for their nuclear-powered version.
The new US deal was announced in a joint press conference held by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday morning, as they unveiled a new strategic and military alliance called AUKUS.
It came as a shock to most. The deal had not been debated in the Australian parliament, and several national security experts have said they had no idea it was coming.
Even the French ambassador only learned Australia had torn up its agreement via the media, which has only stoked fury further.
"We were deliberately ignored," he told the ABC, "and you can realise how deep we feel about such a thing."
Can’t quite believe I’m writing this, but:— Jon Sopel (@BBCJonSopel) September 17, 2021
France is recalling its ambassador to the US and to Australia over submarine deal and #AUKUS agreement.
For such close allies, this is an extraordinary step