French President Emmanuel Macron called on Europe not to "enter into the logic of bloc against bloc," stressing the need for it not to be "subordinate" to the United States or China with regard to Taiwan.
Macron said in an interview – with the French economic newspaper "Les Echos" – published today, Sunday, that "the worst thing is to think that we – the Europeans – must be followers" on the issue of Taiwan "and adapt to the American rhythm and the exaggerated Chinese reaction." ".
He called on Europe to "wake up," adding that "our priority is not to adapt to the agenda of others in different regions of the world."
Macron continued, "Why do we have to follow the rhythm chosen by others? At some point, we have to ask ourselves the question of where our interest lies (…), knowing that we do not want to enter into the logic of mass versus mass."
On Friday, Macron discussed with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, the situation in Taiwan.
China began conducting military exercises after a meeting between the Taiwanese president and US House of Representatives Speaker Kevin McCarthy, last Wednesday in California, and Beijing promised to respond to it with "firm and strong" measures.
The Elysee reported that Friday's meeting between Macron and Xi was "intense and frank," conveying Macron's keen interest in "the build-up of tensions in the region."
In his interview with Les Echos newspaper, the French president called for "strategic independence" to be the "battle for Europe," warning that the acceleration of the Chinese-American "duopoly" might lead to a loss of "time and means to finance" this "strategic independence."
"We will become dependent, while we are able to be the third pole if we have a few years to establish it," he said.
He added, "The contradiction lies in establishing elements for a real European strategic independence, while at the same time following American policy."
He pointed out that he "won the ideological battle" in the European Union, as "5 years ago, we used to say that European sovereignty does not exist."
Macron called for "strengthening the defense industry" and for "accelerating the battle for nuclear energy and renewable energies" on the European continent.