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International relations

Australia says it was 'upfront' with France over submarine deal as crisis continues

Australia's Defence Minister Peter Dutton told Sky News on Sunday: "Suggestions that the concerns hadn't been flagged by the Australian government, just defy, frankly, what's on the public record and certainly what they've said publicly over a long period of time."   © AP

MELBOURNE (Reuters) -- Australia was "upfront, open and honest" with France about its concerns over a deal for French submarines, its defence minister said on Sunday, as a new deal with the United States and Britain continued to fuel a multinational diplomatic crisis.

Australia ditched the 2016 deal with France's Naval Group to build a fleet of conventional submarines, announcing on Thursday a plan to build at least eight nuclear-powered ones with U.S. and British technology in a trilateral security partnership.

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