French government rubbishes Rahul Gandhi’s claims about Rafale deal

Hours after Congress President, Rahul Gandhi claimed in Parliament that there’s no ‘secrecy pact’ about Rafale fighter jet deal between India and France, the French government came out to refute his statement. The Congress President had said that after a meeting with French president, he came to know that there’s no ‘secrecy pact’ in the deal as claimed by Indian government.

Refuting the claims of Rahul Gandhi, the French government in their statement said that the deal “legally binds the two States to protect the classified information provided by the partner.”

“We have noted the statement of Mr Rahul Gandhi before the Indian Parliament. France and India concluded in 2008 a Security agreement, which legally binds the two States to protect the classified information provided by the partner,” France said in a statement.

“The statement could impact security and operational capabilities of the defence equipment of India or France. These provisions naturally apply to the IGA concluded on September 23, 2016 on the acquisition of 36 Rafale aircraft and their weapons,” the statement added.

“As the President of the French Republic indicated publicly in an interview given to India Today on 9th March 2018, In India and in France, when a deal is very sensitive, we can’t reveal all details,”it said.

Reacting on the French statement, Rahul Gandhi said that he still stands by his remarks. “Let them deny it if they want. He(French President) said that before me.I was there, Anand Sharma and Dr.Manmohan Singh were also there,” Rahul Gandhi said.