French Embassy in Kuwait Marks National Day with Spectacular Celebrations

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KUWAIT CITY, July 15:  The French Embassy held a reception to celebrate France’s National Day at the Résidence de France on Wednesday. “I am thrilled to witness such a gathering of people. French National Day is a cherished tradition that holds a special place in the hearts of all French citizens, but also of all our French-speaking friends around the world. And I know they are numerous here in Kuwait,” Ambassador of France to Kuwait Claire Le Flecher said as she welcomed the guests. Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Jarrah Al-Sabah was the guest of honor, who cut the ceremonial cake with the French ambassador.

Ambassador of France to Kuwait Claire Le Flecher and His Excellency, Sheikh Jarrah Al-Sabah, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs during the cake cutting ceremony.

“This celebration is an unwavering commitment to the cultural heritage of France. Our streets come alive filled with vibrant parades, people wearing blue, white and red. The melodies of Edith Piaf and Maurice Ravel fill the air. We celebrate the French way of life, which has inspired countless poets, writers, and thinkers throughout history,” Le Flecher said. “On our national day, we commemorate the July 14, 1789, historic storming of the Bastille prison – which marks the beginning of the French Revolution. But we also commemorate Federation Day, a year later, in 1790, which brought French citizens to celebrate together. A Revolution symbolizes the quest for freedom, equality, and fraternity; a celebration, the year after, which conveys messages of unity and harmony. This double meaning of our national day tells a lot about our country and the values it wants to convey. The love of freedom and democracy, that is vivid in Kuwait, matches this ideal,” Le Flecher said.

Chargé d’Affaires James Holtsnider US Embassy in Kuwait (center) with guests at French Embassy reception to celebrate France’s National Day at the Résidence de France.

“This year, like last year, our joy is unfortunately clouded by the unprovoked war in Ukraine launched by Russia, with its load of human rights violations which I have no doubt will be investigated by international criminal courts. We can only hope that this all stops as early as possible, with a victory of Ukraine. And if there are negotiations, it cannot be at the expense of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a UN member. I know all Kuwaitis share this approach because they have experienced themselves the suffering of an invasion, that is why Kuwait early emphasized the pre-eminence of internationally agreed principles, including the intangibility of territorial integrity,” she stressed.

Photos from the event.

The ambassador said France and Kuwait have a lot in common in their quest for regional stability, and both are sincerely engaged in promoting peace in the Middle East and notably for a viable solution for the Palestinian people. “France and Kuwait share the same outlook on the future of the region. On June 27, His Excellency Sheikh Salem Al-Sabah, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait, traveled to Paris to meet with the French Minister of Foreign Affairs Catherine Colonna, and their views were very close on many topics,” she said. Le Flecher said among other topics, the visa issue was also discussed between the ministers. “I am happy to announce today that a positive judgment was reached in Brussels in order to allow the Cascade visa mechanism for Kuwaiti citizens. It means that Kuwaitis will, hopefully soon, be given long-duration visas following their first demand for a Schengen visa,” she said.

“The ministers also welcomed our vibrant economic relationship. France has become the largest European client of the clean fuel project. Beyond trade, our longlasting investment relationship is a testimony of the trust and the depth of interests that govern our relationship. Our historic cultural and educational cooperation is also a testimony to our strong friendship,” Le Flecher said. “It is a joy for me to perform my duties among you, and the daily support you provide to France in Kuwait is invaluable. Your commitment, your dynamism, and your spirit of solidarity greatly contribute to the quality of the relations we have with our Kuwaiti friends, and I thank you for that. The year was rich in events: The final of the World Cup and the month of La Francophonie, brought us together around festive events. The Pearl of the West exercise, which saw the deployment of 500 French soldiers on Kuwaiti soil, and more recently the Arabian Breeze exercise have brilliantly illustrated the knowhow of our armies,” the ambassador pointed out. “I am of course aware of your concerns, particularly on the issues of family visas and driving licenses, and wish to assure you of the embassy’s tireless action on these subjects. Our minister raised these issues with the Kuwaiti minister for foreign affairs during his visit to Paris, so be sure that they are taken into account at the highest level, and we have received assurances that the Kuwaiti authorities will work quickly to lift these restrictions,” she assured. By Mujahid Iqbal

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