News / USA

    Obama Welcomes Hollande to White House

    Obama Welcomes Hollande to White Housei
    X
    February 12, 2014 1:47 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama welcomed French President Francois Hollande to the White House Tuesday, the first state visit by a French leader in nearly 20 years. Both leaders hailed the strength of the alliance and stressed deepening cooperation on a range of global issues. Senior White House correspondent Dan Robinson reports.
    Presidents Barack Obama and Francois Hollande hailed the strength of the U.S.-France alliance as Hollande continued a state visit to the United States. They also voiced unified positions on Iran sanctions and Syria.
     
    On a bright but cold Washington day, President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcomed Hollande in the traditional ceremony on the White House South Lawn.
     
    After inspecting a military honor guard, the two leaders shook hands with spectators holding French and American flags. Obama paid tribute to a deepening alliance with America's oldest ally.
     
    "Yesterday at Monticello, we reflected on the values that we share, the ideals at the heart of our alliance.  Here under the red, white and blue, and the blue, white and red, we declare our devotion once more to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Liberte, egalite, fraternite," said Obama.
     
    Both leaders said France and the United States owe their freedom to each other.  President Hollande called it a great day for America and France, and spoke through an interpreter about historical bonds.
     
    "We are always united by a common history.  From Yorktown to the beaches of Normandy, as you said so rightly, each of our countries knows what it owes to the other -- its freedom," said Hollande.
     
    Questions about Syria and nuclear negotiations with Iran dominated a more than hour-long news conference.
     
    Calling the situation in Syria "horrendous," Obama said they agreed on the importance of Syrians achieving a political solution and dealing with the humanitarian crisis.
     
    "We are going to continue to commit to not just pressure the Assad regime but also to get countries like Russia and Iran to recognize that it is in nobody’s interest to see the continuing bloodshed and collapse that is taking place inside that country," said Obama.
     
    President Hollande stressed the importance of continued negotiations.
     
    "The only purpose of this conference is to make political transition possible.  It is not about discussing humanitarian measures only.  It is all about making sure that a political change be possible which eventually will have to take place in Syria," said Hollande.
     
    The French leader blamed the Syrian regime for blocking progress.  He echoed President Obama's concern about Russia blocking a vote on a Syria resolution in the United Nations Security Council.
     
    President Obama saluted Hollande for matching words with action in making France a global leader, mentioning Mali, Central African Republic, as well as joint pressure to remove chemical weapons from Syria, and the Iran nuclear negotiations.
     
    Both leaders warned that P5+1 nations are determined to continue enforcing existing Iran sanctions while talks continue. Obama issued this warning to companies seeking to position themselves in Iran.
     
    "Businesses may be exploring, are there some possibilities to get in sooner rather than later if and when there is an actual agreement to be had, but I can tell you that they do so at their own peril right now, because we will come down on them like a ton of bricks," said Obama.

    Hollande said U.S. support enabled the success of French operations in Mali against Islamist fighters.
     
    "It was only successful because a decision was made by the international community.  It was successful because Americans took part and Europeans helped as well as Americans who also gave their support and a president has now been elected in Mali and the Malian state has now found its authority again,” said Hollande.
     
    Other topics included spillover effects in the Middle East from the Syrian conflict, Israel-Palestinian peace negotiations, trade and climate change.
     
    On National Security Agency spying, President Obama said France and other longtime allies were the first to be consulted regarding changes being made to surveillance activities.  Obama said the United States must be respectful of privacy concerns of French citizens. 

    President Hollande indicated that any differences on the issue have been resolved.
     
    "Mutual trust has been restored, and that mutual trust must be based on respect for each other's country but also based on protection of private life, of personal data," said Hollande.
     
    Before a state dinner late Tuesday, Hollande went to Arlington National Cemetery to honor fallen U.S. soldiers and lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
     
    He also presented six U.S. veterans with the French Legion of Honor to demonstrate, as he put it, that "France will never forget the spirit of sacrifice by American soldiers who left their homes to liberate France and Europe."
     
    President Obama announced Tuesday that he has accepted Hollande's invitation to visit France for observances on June 6 marking the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy.

    You May Like

    Ethiopia's Anti-terrorism Law: Security or Silencing Dissent?

    Yonatan Tesfaye was detained in December 2015 on charges under Ethiopia's Anti-Terrorism Proclamation; eleven statements from his Facebook page were used as evidence

    Egypt Orders Trial for Journalists Charged With Harboring Reporters

    Order targets journalists' union chief Yehia Qalash, Khaled al-Balshy and Gamal Abdel Rahim for allegedly spreading false news, harboring fugitive colleagues

    Nigerian Oil Production Falls as Militant Attacks Take Toll

    Country no longer Africa's petroleum king due to renewed militancy in its oil-producing region

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: USMC from: USA
    February 11, 2014 10:36 PM
    well, its official, WE HATE THE BRITS..!! so, take your Churchill bust and your degenerate "royal" mutation and shove it up your a.s.s.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahdai
    X
    Lisa Schlein
    May 31, 2016 1:56 PM
    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahda

    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Mobile App Allows Dutch Muslims to Rate their Imams

    If a young Dutch-Moroccan app developer has his way, Muslims in the Netherlands will soon be able to rate their imams online. Mohamed Mouman says imams rarely get feedback from their followers. He believes his app can give prayer leaders a better picture of what's happening in their communities — and can also keep young people from being radicalized. Serginho Roosblad reports from Amsterdam.
    Video

    Video Moscow Condemns NATO Plans to Beef Up Defense in Eastern Europe, Baltics

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Monday an upcoming "landmark summit" will enhance the alliance's defensive and deterrent presence in eastern Europe and the Baltics. He is visiting Poland ahead of the NATO Summit in Warsaw. Zlatica Hoke reports
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video F-35 Fighter Jet Draws Criticisms as Costs Mount

    America’s latest fighter plane, the F-35, has been mired in controversy. Critics cite cost, faulty design, and the attempt to use it to fill multiple roles. Even the pilot’s helmet is controversial. VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports from New York.
    Video

    Video Concerns Over Civilian Suffering as Iraqi Forces Surround Fallujah

    Thousands of residents are trapped inside the IS-held city ahead of a full scale Iraqi offensive aimed at retaking it.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora