France to open military academy branch in Qatar


The two countries inked an agreement to establish a branch of the military school which will train cadets for promotion. “This is my first visit in my capacity as a defence minister linked with the existence of French troops abroad. Yesterday, I visited Kabul and now I am here. My visit to Qatar reflects our desire to maintain good relations,” said Morin.



Talking of the military school, the minister said: “It will be very sophisticated and a photocopy of Saint Cyr Military Academy which is the biggest and best army school in the world. It will be a unique project in the Gulf.” The goal is to create an excellent military school in the region. France will make available the teachers, both civilian and military personnel, to train Qatari armies.



“It has been agreed to teach in Arabic and French languages as per the Qatari authorities’ wish,” he added. The certificates issued by the school will be equivalent to the ones issued by Saint Cyr Military Academy and will allow its holders to continue further studies at foreign universities.




“This project has a cultural dimension for us, as it will be a good opportunity to spread our culture among Qataris,” he said. As for the defence agreement between Qatar and France signed 10 years ago, he said: “Nothing has changed. The two parties are satisfied with it.”



Speaking on the Iranian nuclear issue, Morin ruled out any possibility of a war in the region. “I stress the stand of France and that of the President on this issue. We all agreed that negotiations should continue and more involvement of the GCC countries is needed as regional involvement is a must for Iran to realise how dangerous it is to expose the region with its nuclear ambitions.”



About the recent Syria-Israel conflict and whether his country would support Israel in case Syria reacted, the minister said he had no knowledge about the Syrian reaction.



On the intervention of his country on the medic case in Libya, Morin said the Parliamentary Investigating Committee had not yet decided who is to be assigned to finalise the case. “As per my knowledge, the parliament was not in session when the committee was formed. Actually, this deal is very traditional and is not worth the fuss that has been created. We have expressed our desire to share information and to sign conventions on training, rehabilitation and techniques in certain fields,” Morin said.



“The French parliament is authorised to cancel any agreement whatsoever, including our Libyan deal. But legally, this is under the authority of the executive bodies. Eventually, it is a political game and needs to be agreed between the two parties. As Libya is now respecting the international laws, I think there are no objections from France for Libya to have nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. We cannot ask a country to stop using nuclear energy for military purposes and ask the same country not to use it for peaceful purposes. The energy issue will be a conflict in the future,” the minister said.



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