The French Ambassador to Kuwait H.E. Christian Nakhle held a ceremony in honor of France’s National Day at the Regency Hotel on 31 May.
Assistant Foreign Minister for Europe Affairs Ambassador Waleed Al-Khubaizi graced the occasion as the chief guest. Members of the diplomatic corps, businessmen, French nationals, representatives from important organizations and the media attended the ceremony.
Students from the French School of Kuwait sang the national anthems of Kuwait and France.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the event, Ambassador Al-Khubaizi stated that the upcoming visit of French President Francois Hollande to Kuwait will be "historic" and "pivotal" in boosting the Kuwaiti-French ties. He added that the two sides are working round-the-clock to prepare files and documents that will be discussed and eventually signed during Hollande's visit to the country.
Noting that several "significant deals" were signed between the two countries during His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah's recent visit to Paris, Al-Khubaizi pointed out that Kuwait and France will celebrate the 52nd anniversary of their diplomatic ties this year. The Kuwaiti diplomat also mentioned that the two countries agreed to boost their military cooperation with signed deals that allowed the Kuwaiti army to acquire French arms and purchase H225M helicopters to bolster its air force fleet.
For his part, Ambassador Nakhle praised the close relationship shared between Kuwait and France though its cooperation in many fields, and pointed to several large projects in Kuwait sponsored by France, including the first French oncology hospital in the Middle East, Institut Gustave Roussy, which will be opening soon.
The Ambassador also stated that he supported the initiative of introducing French as an optional foreign language in government middle schools in Kuwait as he hoped this would result in more Kuwaiti students pursuing post-secondary studies in France in the future.