France’s outgoing international affairs minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, has undiplomatically welcomed the election defeat of Australia’s conservative authorities after a confrontation final yr over an deserted submarine deal between the 2 nations.
Australia scrapped the acquisition value as much as A$90bn (£50bn) final September in favour of a safety pact with the US and the UK.
Scott Morrison, then the prime minister, rejected accusations that his authorities had lied to France, which consequently recalled its ambassadors from the US and Australia as an indication of protest and stated that it was knowledgeable of the pact solely hours earlier than the general public announcement was made.
Le Drian made the remarks about Morrison’s defeat in Saturday’s elections throughout a ceremony in Paris by which he handed over to his successor, Catherine Colonna.
He stated: “I can’t stop myself from saying that the defeat of Morrison suits me very well.”
Le Drian added that Morrison’s actions over the submarine deal confirmed “brutality and cynicism, and I would even be tempted to say of unequivocal incompetence”.
He added that he hoped that the French authorities “can resume frank and constructive dialogue with Australia in the future”.
Morrison, the US president, Joe Biden, and the UK prime minister, Boris Johnson, unveiled a brand new safety partnership final yr, known as the Aukus pact, that scuppered Australia’s 2016 take care of French shipbuilder Naval Group to construct 12 typical submarines.
Australia’s determination has led to an escalation of tensions between Paris and Canberra.
Le Drian stated in September he felt “stabbed in the back” over the “unacceptable” deal that might injury French enterprise.
The French president, Emmanuel Macron, accused Morrison of mendacity to him final yr over the deserted submarine contract.
Australia’s rightwing Coalition authorities misplaced energy after almost a decade in workplace. Morrison conceded defeat and introduced he would step down as chief of his occasion.