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    French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian

    Paris Does Not Want to Isolate Russia Politically, Economically - French FM

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    French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian said that Paris is ready to work with Moscow to bridge the gaps in political views, adding that it's neither seeking to isolate Russia from Europe, nor to weaken Russia's economic and financial situation.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Paris does not aim to isolate Moscow politically or economically, French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian said following the talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

    "We live on a common European continent, we would very much like this continent to become a space for cooperation, not coexistence and in no way a competition. We must jointly promote our security interests, we talked with Mr. Lavrov about it. To do it, we need to understand each other," he said.

    Le Drian went on by stressing that French are "neither seeking to isolate Russia from Europe, nor to weaken Russia's economic and financial situation. We are going to work specifically, pragmatically over the settlement of those problems that hurt both the interests of Russia and the interests of France."

    The first phone talk between Lavrov and Le Drian was held on May 26 when the ministers discussed then-upcoming visit of Putin to France at Macron’s request along with bilateral and international issues.

    France is among Russia’s leading partners in Europe and worldwide regardless of the fact that France joined the EU restrictive anti-Russia measures over Ukraine in 2014.

    The two countries maintain intensive cooperation in the political, economic, trade and cultural spheres.

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