Europe, NATO, war in Ukraine, Algeria, China… Marine Le Pen presented this Wednesday in Paris its foreign policy priorities before the French and international press. On this occasion, she largely stood out from her opponent Emmanuel Macron.
The candidate of the National Rally (RN) said she was in favor of a “strategic rapprochement” between NATO and Russia after the war in Ukraine. “It is in the interest of France and Europe, but also, I believe, of the United States, which has (…) no interest in seeing the emergence of a close Sino-Russian union”, estimated the one who wants to get France out of NATO’s integrated command.
No “appeasement” towards Russia
Regularly attacked by the president-candidate on his “complacency” with regard to Russia of Vladimir Poutine, Marine Le Pen denied any “submission to Moscow” and refused any “follow-up to the Biden administration”. On Russia, “the trial against me is particularly unfair”, “I only defended the interest of France”, she said, claiming “similarities” with Emmanuel Macron, when he received the Russian president in France after his 2017 election and wanted to “re-attach Russia to Europe”.
The far-right candidate had been the only candidate received by Vladimir Putin before the presidential election and his party continues to repay a loan of 9 million euros to a Russian creditor. “I am completely independent of any link, of any power, of any firm of any nationality. I made a loan to a Czech-Russian bank because I never managed to get one in France or in Europe,” she insisted.
A photo that makes a stain
Words that were briefly overshadowed by militant action during his press conference. The latter was briefly disturbed by people holding up a photo of her with the Russian president, surrounded by a heart.
If she condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and said she was in favor of welcoming refugees from this country in France, Marine Le Pen remains hostile to economic sanctions against Moscow, in the name of protecting the purchasing power of the French. Favorable to the transmission of “intelligence” to the Ukrainians, she said on Wednesday “more reserved on the direct delivery of arms”, because “the line between aid and co-belligerence is thin”.
Divergences on Europe
With regard to Germany, whose anti-nuclear policy she castigated, Marine Le Pen says she takes note of “irreconcilable strategic differences” and therefore wants to stop “all cooperation with Berlin” on the military level. She also denounced “French blindness to Berlin”. “I will restore secret diplomacy because it is the only one that is effective in the talkative and open diplomacy of Emmanuel Macron,” she said, denouncing his multilateralism.
Responding also to Emmanuel Macron who accuses him of wanting to leave the European Union without “daring to say it”, she refuted “any ambiguity”. “We are obviously European, it is the form of the organization that makes us diverge”, she said, advocating the transformation of the EU “into an alliance of European nations”, “an organization respectful of nations free and sovereign”, and not “a Europe that threatens and blackmails”.
Emmanuel Macron who, on the contrary, has made Europe the central pillar of his diplomacy for five years, estimated Tuesday evening in Strasbourg (east) that this election was also “a referendum on Europe”. Nationalism leads to “an alliance of nations that want to go to war” in Europe, he said.