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Emmanuel Macron visits Germany. This is the first such visit in 24 years

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The President of France will officially visit Germany for the first time. During the three-day visit, a meeting of the presidents of both countries and a bilateral meeting of governments were planned. The two most important issues to be discussed during this visit are defense and competitiveness.

President France Emanuel Macron pays an official visit for the first time German. He will spend three days there. During this time he will visit Berlin, Dresden and Munster. A bilateral meeting of the French and German governments is scheduled to end the visit, with the European Union's two biggest powers seeking to show unity ahead of next month's EU parliamentary elections.

Macron's current trip to Germany is the first official visit of a French president to Berlin in 24 years. It was supposed to take place last year, but due to the unrest in France, the visit was canceled.

Macron was already on a working visit to Berlin this year, when he took part in the ceremonial meeting of the Bundestag on January 22. He then met with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The President of France visited Berlin just before the extraordinary summit of the European Council scheduled for early February. As it later turned out, EU aid was approved for it Ukrainein the amount of EUR 50 billion – after an unexpected change of position Hungarianwhich had previously vetoed such initiatives.

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Read also: French media: the Polish Prime Minister reconciled the two leaders

“There are tensions in German-French relations”

As Reuters emphasizes, the president of France Emmanuel Macron and Chancellor of Germany Olaf Scholz they have very different leadership styles and have been publicly clashing since 2021 on issues including defense and nuclear energy.

“There are tensions in German-French relations, but partly because Germany and France are dealing with difficult topics,” said Yann Wernert of the Jacques Delors Institute in Berlin, noting that the two countries also reached an agreement on the need for EU enlargement on the east.


The visit is intended to show that “relations work”

The visit is “an attempt to show at the highest political level that this relationship works,” said Mujtaba Rahman, managing director for Europe at the Eurasia Group think tank. He noted that “there are still fundamental differences on the issues that hang over the EU.”

One of the key issues concerns European defense, especially in the event of Trump's victory in the presidential elections USA scheduled for November this year. Defense experts warn that Trump is much less predictable and credible as a European ally than his Democratic rival, the current US president Joe Biden.

Tusk, Scholz and Macron conferenceTVN24

France, which has nuclear weapons, insists on European self-sufficiency in defense matters and has expressed concern about Germany's decision to buy mostly American equipment for the European Air Shield Initiative, also known as Europe's “Iron Dome,” a German initiative announced to increase security in European airspace after Russian aggression against Ukraine.

Germany claims that there is no credible alternative to American military equipment and that Europe does not have time to wait until the domestic defense industry is prepared for threats, e.g. Russia.

Macron in Germany. Visit plan

Macron, accompanied on the trip by his wife Brigitte, will start his visit on Sunday with a meeting in Berlin with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and then pass through the Brandenburg Gate with the city's mayor Kai Wegner.

Brigitte Macron and Emmanuel MacronChristian Liewig-Corbis/GettyImages

On Monday, he will travel to Dresden, where he will deliver a speech in front of the Frauenkirche church, destroyed by Western allies during World War II. On Tuesday he will go to Münster.

As Reuters emphasizes, an important part of his trip will be Tuesday's cabinet meeting in Meseberg near Berlin, during which both governments will get down to work, trying to find common ground on two main issues – defense and competitiveness.

Both countries will also try to find an agreement on the EU agenda for the next five years, given the expected good results of the far right in elections to the European Parliamentwhich will take place on June 6-9, which may make future decision-making in the European Union more difficult.

Main photo source: GettyImages

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