The French government has accused Donald Trump of lacking “common decency” after his Twitter tirade on the third anniversary of the Paris terror attacks.
The United States president mocked France’s record in the First and Second World Wars and lashed out at his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday, saying he had a “very low approval rating”.
Responding to Trump’s outburst, French government spokesman Benjamin Griveaux said: “We were commemorating the assassination of 130 of our compatriots three years ago in Paris and Saint-Denis, and so I will reply in English: ‘Common decency’ would have been appropriate.”
His reaction is the strongest yet by the French government following Trump’s visit to France over the weekend. During the visit, Macron criticised nationalists during his Armistice Day speech, saying patriotism was different to nationalism.
Trump said his French host was “just trying to get onto another subject” and there was “no country more Nationalist than France”. The US president dismissed Mr Macron’s calls for a European army to protect against the US, Russia and China, claiming the French were starting to learn German in Paris before the US joined them as allies in the First World War.
He also attacked French wine tariffs, claiming Paris makes it hard for the US to sell its wines into France but it is easy vice versa. Following talks with Trump on Saturday, Macron told CNN the defence row had been cleared up but he has not reacted publicly to the US president’s Twitter outburst.
One of the French president’s advisers on Tuesday dismissed Trump’s tweets as “written for Americans” and said relations between the two leaders were “not always easy but are enduring”.
Mr Trump was heavily criticised for cancelling a visit to a US war cemetery in France on Saturday due to “bad weather”. Addressing the incident three days later he tweeted: “By the way, when the helicopter couldn’t fly to the first cemetery in France because of almost zero visibility, I suggested driving.