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"Are closer to us" - Macron and Draghi sign contract

2021-11-26T15:17:47.984Z

Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi speaks of a "historic moment". France and Italy are expanding their relations with a bilateral treaty. Does Germany have to worry?



Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi speaks of a "historic moment".

France and Italy are expanding their relations with a bilateral treaty.

Does Germany have to worry?

Rome - Italy and France want to further strengthen their relations in the future and have therefore concluded a friendship pact.

French President Emmanuel Macron and Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi signed the extensive bilateral agreement in Rome on Friday.

This marked a "historic moment" in the history of relations between the two countries, Draghi said afterwards.

France and Italy further strengthened their diplomatic, commercial, political and cultural ties.

"As of today we are closer."

The treaty is known as the Quirinals Treaty - after the palace of the Italian President (Quirinale), where Macron and Draghi met.

The name is reminiscent of the Franco-German Élysée Treaty of 1963, which is named after the official residence of the French President and which formed the basis for the close partnership between the two former "hereditary enemies".

The Quirinals Treaty is now intended to strengthen cooperation between the second largest (France) and third largest (Italy) economies in the EU.

The diplomats recorded the agreements in twelve articles on 15 pages.

These include strengthening the European Union, foreign policy projects, the economy, the environment, security and defense, culture and education.

Draghi mentioned the need for a solidarity-based migration policy.

In addition, the Italian head of government should take part in the Council of Ministers of the French government once a quarter - and vice versa.

Cooperation is being expanded

The text of the contract also shows that the two countries want to cooperate in the space sector.

The universe is referred to as the "key dimension".

The states want to expand their industrial cooperation for exploration in space, observation of the earth and telecommunications.

Italy and France also want to expand their defense cooperation.

The plan is to make it easier for the armed forces of the other country to transit and deploy in their own country.

They also want to support each other with defense equipment.

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Emmanuel Macron (l), President of France, and Mario Draghi, Prime Minister of Italy, shake hands on the occasion of the signing of the Franco-Italian Quirinal Treaty.

© Domenico Stinellis / AP / dpa

Work on the contract had been going on for a number of years, and it now came about primarily through the personal connections between Draghi and Macron, said analyst Wolfango Piccoli.

The expert assumed that no matter how the Italian-French relations developed, Germany would remain France's main partner.

"The agreement will not lead to a change in the balance of powers in Europe," said Piccoli of the German press agency.

Does Germany have to follow suit?

The office manager of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Rome, Tobias Mörschel, sees the contract as an impetus for cooperation in Europe.

"It is not directed against Europe or Germany," he told the dpa.

For Germany it is now a matter of signing the "triangle" and a treaty with Italy - analogous to the Aachen Treaty, which the Federal Republic of Germany signed with France on January 22, 2019 and which was linked to the Élysée Treaty.

"If we want to move the European Union forward, these three countries must cooperate more closely," said Mörschel.

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The Quirinal Agreement comes into being just in the year of the departure of Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU).

Draghi and Macron signed the agreement in the presence of several ministers from both countries as well as Italy's head of state Sergio Mattarella.

A squadron of military pilots thundered over Rome, spraying the colors of the flags of both states.

Following the meeting with the Italian government, Macron went to the Vatican, where Pope Francis received him for a private audience of around one hour.

dpa

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2021-11-26

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