Donald Trump accepts Emmanuel Macron's invitation to visit Paris on Bastille Day

The trip could reinforce military cooperation between the two countries

Clark Mindock
New York
Wednesday 28 June 2017 16:24
Comments
Mr Trump accepted the invitation even though he's had a rocky relationship with Mr Macron
Mr Trump accepted the invitation even though he's had a rocky relationship with Mr Macron

Donald Trump has accepted an invitation to visit Paris for Bastille Day, the French independence day.

French President Emmanuel Macron invited the US President during a phone call this week in which Mr Trump reportedly congratulated his French counterpart on his success in the recent parliamentary elections.

“President Trump looks forward to reaffirming America’s strong ties of friendship with France, to celebrating this important day with the French people, and to commemorating the 100th anniversary of America’s entry into World War I”, the White House said in a statement. “The two leaders will further build on the strong counter-terrorism cooperation and economic partnership between the two countries, and they will discuss many other issues of mutual concern”.

The two presidents have publicly clashed since meeting each other earlier this year, with Mr Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate change accord being a particular sticking point. Still, Mr Macron has appeared to be broadly aligning his country’s foreign policy approach with that of America’s when it comes to combating terrorism.

Diplomats indicated that Mr Trump attending the Paris celebrations next month is a way of reaffirming close military ties between the US and France.

The festivities bring out thousands of revellers, including members of the French army, navy, and air force. The events commemorate the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789 by angry crowds, which symbolises the start of the French revolution. That prison was where the French monarchy kept political prisoners, and symbolised the monarchy’s rule.

Mr Trump’s trip could come before he visits the United Kingdom, even though he was invited there by Prime Minister Theresa May after meeting her in January. Those plans for a visit have not been finalised.

Still, news that Mr Trump was planning on visiting Britain sparked outrage, and raised the possibility that he would be met with protests there should he actually visit. The American President risks that same welcome in Paris, however, and far-left lawmakers in Paris quickly condemned the invitation to visit, saying that because of his politics he is unwelcome in the French capital.

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