President Pavel Holds Talks With French President Macron In Paris

Pavel said the two presidents had discussed not only foreign policy issues but also Czech-French cooperation in the fields of energy, culture and science. Credit: Tomáš Fongus /

Paris, Dec 21 (CTK) – Czech President Petr Pavel held talks with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron in Paris yesterday, during Pavel’s approximately two-hour visit to the Elysee Palace. The two men held a one-on-one meeting after a joint statement to the media.

Pavel told journalists that Czech-French relations are at a high level, with Paris and Prague agreeing not only on the wars in Ukraine and the Middle East, but also on energy and EU enlargement. 

In their private meeting, Pavel said they had discussed not only foreign policy issues but also Czech-French cooperation in the fields of energy, culture and science.

“I appreciate the openness with which we conducted the talks,” said Pavel after the meeting. “It was a practical demonstration that our relations are at a high level, not only in the areas related to current problems such as the war in Ukraine, the situation in the Middle East, the situation in the Sahel, but also in terms of cooperation in energy, the enlargement of the European Union, and migration.” 

“France and the Czech Republic share the view that we must continue to support Ukraine, because we see no other or better alternative,” Pavel continued. “If Ukraine is to withstand pressure from Russia, we must help more and, if possible, faster.” He added that the two presidents had not discussed any specific assistance. France is supporting Ukraine in its defence against Russian aggression, providing military equipment including Caesar guns, air defence systems, radars, and ammunition.

The Czech Republic was one of the first countries to provide Ukraine with concrete military aid following the Russian invasion. In addition to direct supplies from army depots and Czech defence industry companies, the Czech Republic is supporting Ukraine with agreements on the repair of armoured vehicles.

Pavel, a retired general and former chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, also said today that Europe lacks some crucial capabilities to defend its interests and defend itself against aggressors, including intelligence and strategic logistics. “Europe has resigned itself from developing them in recent decades,” the president said.

Pavel arrived in Paris yesterday morning for a planned two-day visit. Today, he will hold talks with French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne and National Assembly Speaker Yael Braun-Pivet.

France is one of the five largest investors in the Czech Republic, and the French company EDF is one of the bidders for the construction of the new nuclear unit at the Dukovany power plant in South Moravia. Pavel said EDF praised the Czech industry during a meeting about the NUWARD small modular reactor project yesterday.

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