Diplomatic Briefing

Your exclusive news aggregator handpicked daily!

Archive for February 10, 2023

Newsline: France seeks stronger ties with Algeria despite ambassador recall

France will continue efforts to strengthen ties with Algeria despite Algiers accusing Paris on Wednesday of orchestrating the escape of an activist it wants to arrest, a French foreign ministry spokesman said. Speaking to reporters, French deputy foreign ministry spokesman Francois Delmas declined to comment on the specific allegations but said that Bouraoui, a Franco-Algerian national, benefited from consular protection like all French nationals. (https://neuters.de/world/europe/france-says-it-wants-stronger-ties-with-algeria-despite-envoy-recall-2023-02-09/) Algeria recalled its ambassador to Paris on Wednesday after Amira Bouraoui, a rights activist detained during the 2019 mass protests in Algeria and freed from prison in 2020, had allegedly crossed into Tunisia illegally after evading Algerian judicial surveillance, according to Algerian and French media. Algiers’ reaction could trigger a new crisis between the countries after months of increasingly warm relations. French President Emmanuel Macron visited Algeria last year, warmly embracing President Abdelmadjid Tebboune on a trip that seemed to turn a page on years of difficult ties.

Newsline: Tunisia strengthens diplomatic ties with Syria

Tunisian President Kais Saied has decided to strengthen diplomatic ties with Syria, the presidency said on Thursday, the clearest sign yet of Tunisia’s intention to fully restore relations days after a deadly earthquake that has devastated large parts of Syria. “The issue of the Syrian regime is an internal matter that concerns only the Syrians,” Saied said in statement following a meeting with his country’s foreign affairs minister. He added that “the ambassador is accredited to the state and not to the regime.” (https://neuters.de/world/tunisian-president-decides-strengthen-diplomatic-ties-with-syria-2023-02-09/) Tunisia cut off diplomatic relations with Syria nearly a decade ago. After that, Tunisia reinstituted a limited diplomatic mission to Syria in 2017, in part to help track more than 3,000 Tunisian militants fighting in Syria.

Newsline: Senior U.S. diplomat eyes climate cooperation with China

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said on Thursday she hoped that Washington and Beijing would be able to continue to work together on climate “at this difficult time.” (https://neuters.de/world/us/senior-diplomat-sherman-hopes-us-china-climate-cooperation-can-continue-2023-02-09/) She listed to a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing areas of potential cooperation with China including fighting the illicit drugs trade, climate, global health and people-to-people exchanges.

Newsline: New French ambassador to Iran seeks release of citizens

France’s new envoy to Iran told President Ebrahim Raisi that Tehran had to immediately release seven French nationals detained in the country, the foreign ministry said after the envoy handed his credentials to the Iranian leader this week. Nicolas Roche was pictured this week in local media meeting Raisi with the state news agency IRNA saying that the Iranian president had criticised France’s Islamophobia and that Roche had been mandated to lift misunderstandings in relations. Describing the policy as “reprehensible”, Deputy foreign ministry spokesman Francois Delmas said that by continuing to hold its citizens, Iran’s relations with France and Europe could only worsen. (https://neuters.de/world/middle-east/new-french-envoy-seeks-release-citizens-talks-with-irans-raisi-2023-02-09/) He said the new ambassador had made it clear to Raisi that the French citizens should be released immediately and that the conditions they were being held in were unacceptable. Ties between France and Iran have deteriorated in recent months with Tehran detaining seven French nationals in what Paris has said are arbitrary arrests that are equivalent to state hostage taking.