Poverty, climate, regional stability on agenda as Saudi crown prince visits France

Macron and the prince sat down for a one-to-one working lunch on the Elysee presidential palace.

The French presidency stated the talks would concentrate on bilateral relations between the 2 international locations and on regional stability points, particularly after long-time rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran restored diplomatic ties earlier this yr.

France is a significant weapons and defence provider to Gulf nations.

The leaders are also getting ready for a world summit subsequent week “aimed toward bringing collectively non-public and public funding” to struggle poverty, assist local weather transition and shield biodiversity, the French presidency stated.

The occasion is anticipated to collect over 50 heads of states and governments in addition to many NGOs and outstanding local weather activists.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives Friday, June 16, 2023 on the Elysee Palace in Paris. – Michel Euler/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved.

Throughout his keep in Paris, Prince Mohammed can be anticipated to push for Riyadh to host the 2030 World Truthful’s Expo.

His go to to France comes because the prince has sought to rehabilitate his picture overseas following the 2018 killing and dismemberment of Washington Put up columnist Jamal Khashoggi on the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

Whereas Saudi Arabia denies the prince’s involvement, US intelligence companies have assessed he doubtless ordered Khashoggi’s killing as a part of a wider crackdown on any problem to his rule.

Within the time since Prince Mohammed has sought to painting Saudi Arabia as a doable mediator amid Russia’s conflict on Ukraine and has used its place because the dominant member of the OPEC+ oil cartel to try to enhance international vitality costs.

The prince additionally seeks to construct megaprojects throughout the dominion to create new jobs for Saudi Arabia’s youthful inhabitants.

Nonetheless, challenges and worldwide suspicions stay. Saudi Arabia stays mired in its years lengthy conflict with Yemen. Executions in Saudi Arabia, one of many world’s prime executioners, have spiked after the coronavirus pandemic.

A prime French official, talking anonymously in accordance with the presidency’s customary practices, stated France needs to persuade Saudi Arabia to have interaction with Russia on a plan to finish the conflict whereas preserving Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Macron additionally deliberate to debate human rights as France firmly opposes the dying penalty, the official stated.

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