RUSI JournalVolume 158Issue 2members only

France and the Arab Upheavals: Beyond Sarkozy

France’s foreign-policy record on the Arab upheavals has been mixed, yet Francois Hollande’s presidency shows a stepchange in the French approach to unrest in the region

The consequences of the upheavals across the Middle East and North Africa since December 2010 have posed a significant foreign-policy challenge to France, which has historically distinguished itself from other major Western powers by maintaining a closer relationship with the Arab states, and its former colonies, in this region. Despite this familiarity, however, the incoherence of the French response under President Sarkozy to the turbulence that unfolded early in 2011

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