Vice-President Kamala Harris will head next month to Paris for talks with French President Emmanuel Macron, according to the White House.
The White House announced Ms. Harris’ visit to France as President Joe Biden and Mr. Macron spoke by phone on October 22. The two Presidents are scheduled to meet in Rome later this month on the margins of the Group of 20 summit.
Mr. Macron’s office said in a statement that he and Mr. Biden discussed “the establishment of a stronger European defence, complementary to NATO and contributing to global security”. In addition to meeting with Mr. Macron, Ms. Harris will deliver a speech on Nov. 11 at the annual Paris Peace Forum and participate the following day in the Paris Conference on Libya. She will be joined by her husband Douglas Emhoff for the visit.
The scheduled meeting comes amid an effort by the Biden administration to soothe its relationship with the French which became strained by a U.S. deal announced last month to sell nuclear-powered submarines to Australia. The move by the U.S. undercut a more than $60 billion deal by a French defence contractor to sell diesel-powered submarines to Australia.
“They will discuss the importance of the transatlantic relationship to global peace and security and underscore the importance of our partnership on global challenges from COVID-19 and the climate crisis to issues affecting the Sahel and the Indo-Pacific,” Ms. Harris’ senior adviser Symone Sanders said in a statement.
Ms. Harris and Mr. Emhoff’s visit coincides with Veterans Day in the U.S. and Armistice Day in France. The two plan to mark the solemn commemorations with a visit to Suresnes American Cemetery outside Paris, Ms. Sanders said.