09:26 GMT10 May 2021
Listen Live
    Get short URL
    Russia-France Mistral Deal (124)

    The United States has not given any indication they would purchase the Mistral warships from France, French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in a speech to the US German Marshall Fund.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — In November 2014, France cancelled a $1.5 billion contract with Russia to deliver two Mistral aircraft carriers. The contract was terminated as a result of political pressure related to allegations of Moscow interference in the Ukraine conflict — claims delied by Russia.

    “[Defense Secretary] Ashton Carter did not say he wanted to buy them earlier when I saw him,” Le Drian said on Monday.

    Le Drian explained that the French government was encouraged to end the Mistral deal during an October 2014 visit to Washington.

    Being asked if the Mistral ships could end up in US ports, Le Drian joked, “If we can agree on a price, why not?”

    Le Drian described the decision to cancel the contract with Russia as “courageous” and a “strategic choice.”

    “Now nobody is talking about the Mistral, but it is still costing us 1.2 billion euros [$1.3 billion] in the French economic situation which is difficult.”

    A final agreement on French compensation to Russia for the termination of the Mistral contracts is still pending. Moscow has insisted on approximately $1.3 billion in compensation.

    Le Drian visited Washington, DC on Monday where he met with his counterpart in the US Department of Defense.

    Russia-France Mistral Deal (124)


    Russia to Show Off Design of Mistral Replacement at Maritime Defense Show
    Paris Takes Steps to Compensate Moscow for Undelivered Mistral Warships
    MEP Creates Working Group to Re-Establish Dialogue With Russia
    Mistrals' Non-Delivery to Russia Demonstrated 'Hypocrisy of France'
    France Unwilling to Pay Russia More Than 1Bln Euros for Mistral Deal Fail
    France, Mistral, Ashton Carter, Jean-Yves Le Drian, US, Russia
    Community standardsDiscussion