France, Relations with
- Despite their lack of a common border, France and Russia share a dynamic history of bilateral relations dating back to the Napoleonic Era. During the Cold War, France—particularly under the leadership of Charles de Gaulle— plied a middle ground between its North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies, particularly the United States and Great Britain, and the Communist powers of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and the People’s Republic of China. Warm relations between Moscow and Paris were characteristic of the Jacques Chirac presidency (1995–2007). Chirac, known to be sympathetic to many of Russia’s concerns about Washington’s dominance of the international system, often worked to assuage Boris Yeltsin’s fears regarding NATO expansion and to establish the Russian Federation as a partner to the military alliance. France’s traditional pro-Serbia orientation also created a natural common front between Moscow and Paris during the 1990s. As permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, France and Russia often found common cause on issues related to counterterrorism and instability in South Asia and other troubled regions. Economic relations are robust; France is one of the largest exporters to Russia and a major source of foreign trade and investment (approximately $1.5 billion per year), particularly in developing the Shtokman natural gas field. There are also significant joint projects in the fields of aeronautics, chemicals, nuclear energy, and automobile manufacturing. In advance of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, Vladimir Putin entered into a collaborative relationship with Chirac and Gerhard Schröder, known as the Yekaterinburg Triangle, in an effort to dissuade Washington from the use of force. French political elites, apprehensive about George W. Bush’s freedom agenda, sought to leverage a Paris-Berlin-Moscow axis to prevent a second Westernled invasion of a Muslim country, but to no avail. Russo-French relations cooled with the election of the decidedly pro-American Nicholas Sarkozy in 2007; in a diplomatic snub, Moscow noticeably delayed congratulations to the new leader, the only country to do so. In the run-up to his victory, Sarkozy had taken a particularly critical line on Putin’s growing authoritarianism and human rights violations in Chechnya.During the South Ossetian War, Sarkozy emerged as the principal peace broker between Moscow and Tbilisi, ultimately crafting the six-point plan for a cease-fire. Despite the tough rhetoric, Sarkozy’s successful personal diplomacy with Putin demonstrated that relations were on the mend. However, a lingering issue remains regarding Western Europe’s exposure to Moscow’s aggressive use of pipeline politics in its near abroad. French energy security, often threatened by cuts in the distribution of oil and gas traveling via Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus, and other former Soviet states, remains a major issue in bilateral and European Union–Russian relations. An increasing divide between the two countries on how to deal with Iran’s nuclear program is also a major sticking point in Franco-Russian relations.See also Kosovo.
Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation. Robert A. Saunders and Vlad Strukov. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Italy, Relations with — As Holy Roman emperors until Napoleon put an end to the office in 1806, Habsburgs were titular sovereigns in several principalities throughout the Italian peninsula. In the 16th century, the Spanish branch of the house of Austria occupied and… … Historical dictionary of Austria
Iran, Relations with — Persian Russian relations date to the 18th century as the Romanov Empire began to expand south of the Caucasus. During the 1800s, Russia annexed Persian held Azerbaijan and displaced Iranian influence in Central Asia. During the Russian Civil… … Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation
Germany, Relations with — It is not until its unification in 1871–1872 that Germany became a “foreign” state to the Habsburg rulers of Austria. The dynasty supplied the kings and emperors of “Germany” from the middle of the 15th century until 1806. Even though… … Historical dictionary of Austria
Canada-France relations — Modern Canada France relations have been marked by high levels of military and economic cooperation, but also by periods of diplomatic discord, primarily over the status of Quebec. History French Colony At one time nearly all of Eastern Canada,… … Wikipedia
China–France relations — Sino French relations France … Wikipedia
Denmark–France relations — Franco Danish relations France … Wikipedia
Cases of controversial relations with the Axis of World War II — includes states which were not officially members of Axis but had controversial relations with one or more Axis members.Europe Andorra During the Second World War, Andorra remained neutral but was an important smuggling route between Vichy France … Wikipedia
Dates of establishment of diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China — Main article: Foreign relations of the People s Republic of China Since its founding in 1949, the People s Republic of China (PRC) has had a diplomatic tug of war with its rival in Taiwan, the Republic of China (ROC). Throughout the Cold War,… … Wikipedia
Chad–France relations — Chad France relations Chad … Wikipedia
Colombia–France relations — Colombia France relations Colombia … Wikipedia