French President Emmanuel Macron met this Thursday afternoon with his Argentine counterpart, Alberto Fernandez, in a meeting that lasted less than an hour and was held at the Elysee Palace. The President traveled to Europe, at the invitation of his French counterpart, to participate in the Peace Forum, which will focus on the debate on the war between Ukraine and Russia.
The president of the Andean countries landed at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris at around 2:00 pm on Thursday and will remain in the French capital until next Sunday, when he will fly to Indonesia to participate in the G20 summit.
On a Parisian afternoon, Fernandez had a meeting with the French president, where, after a warm greeting, they addressed a series of issues relating to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the resulting economic crisis in the rest of the world. After the meeting, Macron addressed the press with the following message: “Dear Alberto, I am pleased to welcome you again here in Paris, my friend the President of Argentina, for this fifth edition of the Peace Forum (…) We have raised many issues in our bilateral region for a moment, Then we will work on the issue of child protection in social networks and on the regulation of platforms to protect children online.
Then the French president said: “Of course we will meet at the G-20 next week to talk about the war between Russia and Ukraine, the issue of climate, its impact on the poorest countries, and about all these issues that we dealt with today.” Then he continued: “We share the same democratic values, and the desire to accelerate the energy transition and protect the Amazon in particular, as well as defend international law and pluralism,” to end with the phrase “we will talk about these issues, the issue of peace and stability in the region and the situation in Venezuela and Mexico.”
The situation in Venezuela
The Argentine press confirmed, this week, that one of the reasons for the president’s visit to Paris is related to the president’s intention to mediate with Emmanuel Macron to promote the lifting of the embargo on Venezuela.
Fernandez’s approach to Macron wasn’t the only step a Latin American leader took in pursuing the debate on the Venezuela issue this week. In fact, this Thursday also in Paris, the French president met with Colombian President Gustavo Petro to tackle the same issue. The aim of the meeting was to move forward with the necessary steps to be able to set a date for elections in Venezuela.
That same week, at COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, the French president kindly welcomed his Venezuelan counterpart, Nicolas Maduro, and went so far as to say to him: “I’d like to talk a little more.” He even invited him to visit him in Paris.
The need to obtain oil will prompt the French president to seek a certain rapprochement with the Venezuelan president, something that could already be seen last June at the G7 summit in Germany. At the time, the Elysee issued an official statement saying that “Venezuelan oil should also be able to return to the market.” Along the same lines, the French government also spoke of “diversification of oil supply sources”, which also included Iran.
As a result of this proposal, in a speech Maduro expressed at the time: “Venezuela is ready to receive all French companies that want to come and produce oil and gas for the European market and the world market.”