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Hollande Rails at Trump’s Criticism of Paris

Francois HollandeFrancois Hollande

French President Francois Hollande hit back at Donald Trump with a dig about gun control on Saturday, after the new US president attacked France’s immigration policies and Paris.

“I don’t want to make a comparison, but there are no weapons circulating here; there are no people who take weapons to shoot into the crowd,” the Socialist president said, in a reference to the tighter gun control measures in France than in the US, France24 reported.

“It is never good to show the slightest mistrust toward a friendly country. That is not what you do toward an ally and I ask the American president not to do that to France,” Hollande said at the opening of the high-profile annual agricultural fair in Paris.

Hollande added that he had recently spoken to Trump on the telephone, and that the US president had then expressed his “love” for Paris and France.

The tit-for-tat row began when, in a speech to conservatives at a rally outside Washington on Friday, Trump really hammered France.

Trump referred to a friend ‘Jim’ who used to be a regular visitor to Paris, but that Jim hasn’t made the trip in four or five years because “Paris is no longer Paris.”

“Take a look at what’s happened in France. Take a look at Nice and Paris,” the president said in an apparent reference to last year’s tragic Bastille Day attack in Nice and the 2015 Paris attacks.

He said his friend ‘Jim’ used to visit Paris each summer. “It was automatic ... He wouldn’t miss it for anything.”

“Now he doesn’t even think in terms of going there. Take a look at what’s happening to our world folks and we have to be smart. We have to be smart. We can’t let it happen to us,” Trump said.

Trump’s remarks came as he battled to defend his controversial crackdown on immigrants and criticized not only long-time allies France, but also Sweden and Germany in an address at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

 

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