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OBAMA

Barack Obama to meet Macron for ‘private’ lunch during weekend in Paris

Former US president Barack Obama will be in Paris this weekend where he will be treated to a lunch with President Emmanuel Macron. The event will be low key so as not to cheese off Donald Trump.

Barack Obama to meet Macron for 'private' lunch during weekend in Paris
Obama had backed Macron for president. AFP
The lunch at Macron's Elysee Palace residence — in a “private” capacity, the presidency said Thursday — will come as Obama visits Paris to speak to Les Napoleons, a network of communications professionals.
 
Obama, who publicly endorsed Macron during his election campaign, will arrive in Paris on Friday where he is due to make an appearance at the bi-annual “Napoleons” summit as the special guest.
 
He will give a speech at the Radio France auditorium. 
 
Macron has invited him for lunch on Saturday although the venue remains a secret. The lunch meeting has not been announced officially as the Elysée Palace are apparently concerned about irritating current US president Donald Trump, who they fear may take offence.
 
It is unlikely Obama will be given the same treatment Trump was given during his summer visit to Paris, when he and his wife Melania were wined and dined at the Jules Verne restaurant on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower.
 
Trump however has not been invited to the December 12 climate summit in Paris, unlike 100 other leaders, and Macron has also said he wants to save the Iranian nuclear deal despite Trump's opposition.
 
Last time Obama was in Paris in December 2015 he dined with then French president François Hollande at L'Ambroisie, a restaurant with three Michelin stars in the swanky Place des Vosges square.
 
Hollande treats Obama to three-star French cuisine
 
He had apparently asked Hollande if they could eat out rather than at the Elysée Palace.
 
Obama is also due to meet Hollande during his latest trip to Paris but not his predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy.
 
 

ENVIRONMENT

Obama: Paris summit to show ‘we are not afraid’

US President Barack Obama insisted on Sunday he would go ahead with a visit to Paris for world climate talks despite the deadly attacks there, urging other leaders to attend and show "we are not afraid" of extremists.

Obama: Paris summit to show 'we are not afraid'
US President Barack Obama speaking in Malaysia on Sunday. Photo: Fred Dufour/AFP
“I think it's absolutely vital for every country, every leader, to send a signal that the viciousness of a handful of killers does not stop the world from doing vital business,” he said following an Asia-Pacific summit in
Malaysia.
 
In addition to hunting down terrorists, missile strikes, curbing jihadist financing and other steps, “the most powerful tool we have to fight ISIL is to say that we're not afraid”, he said, using one of the acronyms for the Islamic
State group.
   
Over the past week Obama and other Asia-Pacific leaders have held successive summits in Turkey, the Philippines and Malaysia that have been overshadowed by the recent string of deadly extremist attacks.
   
The carnage in Paris, Lebanon and Mali has sparked calls by assembled leaders for a concerted international effort to stamp out Islamic State and other jihad groups.
 
Obama is among world leaders due in Paris for talks beginning November 30 and intended to reach a global climate change accord.
   
“We do not succumb to fear. That's the primary power that these terrorists have over us,” he said.