France lobbies EU as trust in US, UK and Australia wanes

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BRUSSELS (AP) — France is urging its European Union partners to consider delaying negotiations on a future EU trade agreement with Australia. The request comes over what Paris says is a lack of trust sparked by a major defense deal between the U.S., Australia and Britain. The Indo-Pacific security deal will see Australia cancel a multi-billion-dollar contract to buy diesel-electric French submarines and acquire U.S. nuclear-powered vessels instead. French European Affairs Minister Clement Beaune says he will raise the trade pact and the security implications of the deal at a meeting Tuesday with his counterparts in Brussels. France will also ensure that it’s on the agenda at EU summits and ministerial meetings next month. Beaune says “it’s a matter of trust.”

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