France suspends military exports to Turkey

Syria – European Union/fight against terrorism – Statement by M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, on his arrival at the Foreign Affairs Council

Luxembourg, 14 October 2019

Ladies and gentlemen,

This Council is meeting amid an especially serious political context. It is serious because the Turkish offensive risks causing the re-emergence of Daesh [so-called ISIL]. It risks bringing about a resurgence of Daesh that could take many forms. This has already begun, because in Raqqa and Qamishli there have been attacks. It is especially serious because the Syrian Democratic Forces, currently under threat, are our allies. They have been our allies since the fight against Daesh began. And it is especially serious because this offensive will cause a genuine humanitarian disaster. There are already 130,000 refugees and displaced persons, who are in distress.

Given this, France is expecting several things from this meeting. First, a condemnation of the Turkish offensive and an express call to stop this offensive. Next and specifically, a strong position on arms exports to Turkey. And above all, we would like this meeting to provide an opportunity to ensure that the United States convenes a meeting of the Global Coalition against Daesh. Because we have been engaged in combat against Daesh since 2014, under American leadership with some 30 participating countries, many of them European. It is now important for us to meet to assess the new situation, because France’s number one enemy remains Daesh.

Thank you for your attention./.

Syria – Turkish offensive in north-east Syria – Joint communiqué issued by M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, and Mme Florence Parly, Minister for the Armed Forces

Paris, 12 October 2019

France reiterates its firm condemnation of the unilateral offensive begun by Turkey in north-east Syria. This offensive undermines the Global Coalition against Daesh’s security and stabilization efforts. It carries with it significant humanitarian consequences. It therefore endangers Europeans’ security.

Pending a cessation of this offensive, France has decided to suspend all planned exports of war material to Turkey which is likely to be employed as part of the offensive in Syria. This decision is effective immediately.

The European Union Foreign Affairs Council, which will be held in Luxembourg on Monday 14 October, will provide an opportunity to coordinate a European approach in this respect.

France is asking for a meeting of the Global Coalition against Daesh to be held swiftly to talk about the continuation of the Coalition’s efforts in this context./.

Published on 08/01/2020

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