Australia “decision in national interest” to cancel 77 trillion won nuclear submarine contract with France

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference on the ‘AUKUS’, a trilateral security consultative body between the US and the UK, in Sydney on the 19th. Sydney = EPA Yonhap News

Australia, which broke the contract with France to build nuclear submarines and formed the trilateral security consultative body ‘AUKUS’ with the US and the UK, said, “We have made a decision in line with our national defense interests.”

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on the 19th (local time) that “I understand the disappointment of the French government, but Australia, like other sovereign countries, must make decisions in line with our defense interests.” Earlier, Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton said in an interview with local media about the cancellation of the submarine contract, “We were honest and honest. That’s what we did,” he said.

Earlier, the United States and the United Kingdom announced the launch of the Orcus by surprise and announced that they would support Australia’s development of nuclear submarines. As a result, Australia has decided to terminate the 77 trillion won (US$77 billion) contract to supply diesel submarines with the French defense company Naval Group in 2016. In response, France responded by saying that it was “just hit the back of the head” and immediately summoned its ambassadors to the US and Australia.

However, anti-nuclear groups in Australia are opposed to the development of nuclear submarines. These groups are protesting that the introduction of nuclear submarines could become a ‘Trojan horse’ for the nuclear industry, which has been rejected for decades due to environmental and nuclear waste disposal issues.

Six countries in the world currently have nuclear submarines. USA, UK, China, Russia, India and France. These countries have a high share of nuclear power in common. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has warned Prime Minister Morrison that nuclear submarines will not be welcome in New Zealand’s waters, which have remained nuclear-free since 1984.

Jiwon Kang reporter


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