France says Biden acted like Trump in Australian submarine deal

France on Thursday accused President BidenJoe BidenPressure grows for breakthrough in Biden agenda talks State school board leaves national association saying they called parents domestic terrorists Sunday shows preview: Supply chain crisis threaten holiday sales; uncertainty over whether US can sustain nationwide downward trend in COVID-19 cases MORE of making an "unpredictable decision" like former President TrumpDonald TrumpMcAuliffe takes tougher stance on Democrats in Washington Democrats troll Trump over Virginia governor's race Tom Glavine, Ric Flair, Doug Flutie to join Trump for Herschel Walker event MORE "used to do" after he scrapped a $40 billion submarine defense deal that the European nation had signed with Australia, according to Reuters.

"This brutal, unilateral and unpredictable decision reminds me a lot of what Mr. Trump used to do," French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told franceinfo radio, according to the wire service. "I am angry and bitter. This isn't done between allies."

The U.S., Australia and the United Kingdom on Wednesday established a new trilateral security partnership in the Indo-Pacific. The three planned to launch an 18-month review exploring how Australia could best acquire nuclear-powered submarines.


In the process, however, France was left behind.

France had worked on the submarines since 2016, when Australia had selected Naval Group, a French shipbuilder, to build $40 billion worth of subs to replace their two-decade-old ones, Reuters reported. Australia even reconfirmed the deal with France just two weeks ago. 

"It's a stab in the back," Le Drian said of the new deal, according to the news outlet. "We created a relationship of trust with Australia and that trust has been broken."

While Trump and French President Emmanuel MacronEmmanuel Jean-Michel MacronFrench ambassador to Australia blasts sub deal with US: 'Way you treat your allies does resonate' America's subplot and Europe caught in the undertow UN agency to pay salaries of Afghan health care workers MORE did not have a strong relationship, some diplomats say that there have been concerns about Biden's relationship with EU allies, Reuters wrote.

On Wednesday, Biden called France a "key partner in the Indo-Pacific."

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement that the country looked forward to continuing to work "closely and positively" with France, adding that "France is a key friend and partner to Australia and the Indo-Pacific."