Paris, July 11, 2012
Excerpt from the daily press briefing by Bernard Valero, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs’spokesman (Paris, 11th July 2012)
Visit to France by Mr. Michel Suleiman, President of Lebanon
Mr. Michel Suleiman, President of Lebanon, will conduct a working visit to France on July 12. He will be received by President Hollande for a working dinner, which will also be attended by Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister of Defense.
During the day, Mr. Suleiman will meet with the Presidents of the National Assembly and the Senate.
Mr. Suleiman’s visit – the first by a Lebanese leader since President Hollande’s inauguration and the appointment of the government - will provide an opportunity to reaffirm the deep ties of friendship between France and Lebanon, as well as to address the major regional issues.
The working dinner with President Hollande will also provide an opportunity for an in-depth exchange of views on the grave crisis in Syria and its worrying implications for the region.
President Hollande will reaffirm to President Suleiman the importance that France attaches to Lebanon’s stability and security in the face of this crisis. He will reaffirm France’s support for President Suleiman’s initiative aimed at establishing national dialogue in Lebanon.
Lastly, during these discussions, President Hollande will reaffirm France’s support for UNIFIL.
Visit to France by Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament
Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament, will visit Paris from July 12 to 14.
The purpose of this visit is to strengthen cooperation with the French authorities. President Hollande has, since May 6, stressed France’s determination to work with the Community institutions, and first and foremost with the European Parliament.
Together with his counterparts from the National Assembly and the Senate, Mr. Martin Schulz will discuss the role that should be played by the national Parliaments and the European Parliament.
On the evening of July 12, Mr. Schulz will be received for a working dinner with Mr. Bernard Cazeneuve, Minister Delegate for European Affairs.
Mr. Schulz has been invited by President Hollande to attend the ceremonies to celebrate the French national holiday, together with a delegation from the European Parliament, composed of Mr. Gianni Pittella, First Vice President, Mr. Joseph Daul, Chairman of the EPP Group, Ms. Catherine Trautmann, Head of the French delegation of the S&D Group, Mr. Elmar Brok, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, and Mr. Arnaud Danjean, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Security and Defense.
Public execution of a woman in Afghanistan
France strongly condemns the public execution of a woman for adultery in Parwan province in Afghanistan. As the Afghan authorities have promised, full light must be shed on this crime, the perpetrators of which must be identified and brought to justice.
France is especially concerned by the resurgence of violence against women and girls in Afghanistan. As the international community reaffirmed at the recent Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan (July 8), the Afghan authorities must ensure that women’s rights are strengthened, notably with respect to access to justice, health, education and the prevention of violence against them. The minister gave special emphasis to this matter in his speech during this conference. We will be particularly attentive to this issue.
France is continuing to mobilize its efforts to combat violence against women throughout the world. This mobilization remains one of our top priorities with respect to the protection of human rights. France contributed to the adoption of the Security Council resolutions on “Women, peace and security,” which notably call on States to strengthen the fight against violence to women and to increase the participation of women in peace negotiations and all decision-making processes.