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Fabius says 'no certainty' of deal at Iran nuclear talks

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Saturday there was "no certainty" at this stage that a deal on Iran's disputed nuclear programme could be reached between Tehran and world powers in Geneva. Speaking to France Inter radio from the Swiss city as a third day of talks opened, Fabius also pointed to a need to take into account "concerns" from Israel. "There is an initial draft that we do not accept... As we speak, I have no certainty that we can finish up," Fabius said.

France calls for force if chemical arms confirmed in Syria

France is seeking a reaction with "force" if a massacre in Syria involving chemical weapons is confirmed, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Thursday, although he ruled out the use of ground troops. "If it is proven, France's position is that there must be a reaction, a reaction that could take the form of a reaction with force," Fabius told BFM-TV. "There are possibilities for responding," he said without elaborating.

France, Britain to push EU to end Syria arms ban - Fabius

By John Irish PARIS (Reuters) - France and Britain want an urgent European Union meeting, possibly this month, to persuade their allies to lift an embargo on supplying arms to the Syrian opposition, France's foreign minister said on Thursday. The two countries accuse Syrian President Bashar al-Assad of gambling on a military victory, and hope the threat of arming the rebels will force him into talks and a transition of power after a two-year-old conflict that is destabilising the region.

France's Fabius says Europe must drop Syria arms ban

PARIS (Reuters) - French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius kept up his push on Wednesday for Europe to ditch a ban on supplying arms to Syria, saying stepping up help to the opposition was the only way to end the bloody two-year-old crisis. "We must go further and allow the Syrian people to defend themselves against this bloody regime. It's our duty to help the Coalition, its leaders and the Free Syrian army by all means possible," Fabius wrote in the daily Liberation newspaper.

France to begin Mali troop withdrawal in March: Fabius

France expects to begin withdrawing its soldiers from Mali "starting in March, if all goes as planned", French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said in a newspaper interview to be published Wednesday. "I think that starting in March, if all goes as planned, the number of French troops could be reduced," Fabius told the daily Metro. Nearly 4,000 French soldiers are currently deployed in Mali in an operation against Islamist militants.

France working to 'quickly' withdraw Timbuktu forces: FM

France is working to "very quickly" withdraw its forces from Timbuktu, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Monday, without making clear if the troops would be sent further into the north of Mali. "We want to be rapidly relieved by the AFISMA African forces in the cities that we hold," Fabius told France Inter radio. In Timbuktu a withdrawal "could take place very quickly, we are working on it," he said.

UPDATE 1-France seeks Gulf Arab help for Mali anti-rebel push

ABU DHABI, Jan 15 (Reuters) - France expects Gulf Arab states will help an African campaign against Islamist rebels in Mali, possibly with materials or financing, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Tuesday. In response to questions from reporters on a visit to the United Arab Emirates, Fabius added that the presence of French troops on the ground in the Muslim African state would not galvanise al Qaeda recruitment in the region.
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