The French government contradicts Congress President Rahul Gandhi over his claim in the Lok Sabha that French President Emmanuel Macron had told him there is no secrecy pact between India and France over the Rafaele deal. The spokesperson of France’s Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs has said the two countries have signed an agreement to protect classified information.New Delhi: Congress President Rahul Gandhi listens to a debate on ‘no-confidence motion’ in Lok Sabha during the Monsoon Session of Parliament, in New Delhi on Friday, July 20, 2018.
Rahul Gandhi, speaking in the Lok Sabha on the motion of no confidence on Friday, had said he had met Macron, who told him that France has no problems with releasing the details of the Rafale deal signed by the Modi government.
“We have noted the statement of Rahul Gandhi before the Indian Parliament. France and India concluded in 2008 a Security agreement, which legally binds the two States to protect the classified information provided by the partner, that could impact security and operational capabilities of the defence equipment of India or France. These provisions naturally apply to the IGA concluded on 23 September 2016 on the acquisition of 36 Rafale aircraft and their weapons. As the President of the French Republic indicated publicly in an interview given to India Today on 9th March 2018, ‘In India and in France, when a deal is very sensitive, we can’t reveal all details’,” said the spokesperson of France’s Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs in response to a question about Rahul Gandhi’s claims.