France’s Macron says global system in ‘unprecedented crisis’

French President Emmanuel Macron waves after a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris February 27, 2019. — Reuters pic
French President Emmanuel Macron waves after a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris February 27, 2019. — Reuters pic

PARIS, Nov 12 — French President Emmanuel Macron today said that the global political system was in “unprecedented crisis”, urging new kinds of alliances and cooperation to solve the world’s problems.

Macron’s warning came days after the publication of an interview in which the president argued Nato was experiencing brain death and Europe risked becoming insignificant, in comments that sent shockwaves around EU capitals.

“We are experiencing an unprecedented crisis in our international system,” he told the Paris Peace Forum, a France-backed group promoting global peace.

The president, who has sought a prominent place on the international stage since coming to power in 2017, said that “new ways of cooperation, new alliances” are needed between states and organisations, complaining that the United Nations itself has become “blocked”.

Macron lamented that while the global political and financial systems have worked well after World War II, they are now in crisis.

“The system was efficient for 70 years but it allowed new inequalities to emerge,” the president said, adding: “A crisis of our democracy allowed unilateralism to be reborn.

“We need more cooperation to respond to these challenges,” he said, warning against reluctance to question existing international institutions.

Macron’s interview with The Economist, published Thursday, described by analysts as a revealing expose of the president’s views, caused controversy in Europe with German Chancellor Angela Merkel saying his comments were “drastic”.

Possibly taking aim at his critics, Macron said Tuesday that plain-speaking was essential.

“I think we need the truth. Squeamishness or hypocrisy won’t work. Silence is not a solution,” he said. — AFP

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