"Minister Parly and me, we are happy to be in Moscow today. Recent meeting of our heads of state has further enhanced the importance of this meeting. We are here to establish frank and demanding dialogue, wished by [French] President [Emmanuel] Macron. Only this agenda of trust and concrete decisions that we forge will allow us to advance together in creating new architecture of security and trust in Europe, complying with our principles and our values," Le Drian said ahead of the talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu.
Le Drian remarked that it was impossible to be "satisfied with this current situation of profound mistrust when the conflict continues threatening the security of the continent."
The French foreign minister expressed hope that the upcoming meeting would help exchange opinions on new challenges and define a common agenda.
"All this in the logic of common security for Europeans without compromising our security interests and those of our allies and partners. We envisage concrete progress during this reunion and our efficiency will be measured by concrete actions, which we expect," Le Drian said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Macron held phone talks on Sunday, discussing key issues of the 2+2 ministerial talks in Moscow.
In late August, the two heads of state had a bilateral meeting at the French presidential residence in the Fort de Bregançon in southern France. At the time, Putin and Macron discussed a wide range of issues, including the Russian-French bilateral cooperation as well as the most pressing issues, such as the Ukrainian crisis, tensions in the Middle East, and Syria.