US President Joe Biden told French President Emmanuel Macron that the United States was “clumsy” over a security deal signed by the US, UK and Australia – which lost France billions.
It was the first meeting between the US and French head of states since the Aukus pact.
The Aukus pact will allow Australia build nuclear-powered submarines.
The deal caused upset in France, as it lost $37 billion to Australia.
Biden said: “I was under the impression that France had been informed long before that the deal was not going through, honest to God.”
“What we did was clumsy.”
The pact, which will also cover AI and other technologies, is seen as an effort to counter the rise of China.
Macron said after the meeting: “Trust is like love, declarations are good, but proof is better.”
IMAGE – “Joe Biden” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0