Madagascar requests the departure of the ambassador of the European Union

What broke the camel’s back was undoubtedly the last press conference on February 26 where the ambassador of the European Union Isabelle Delattre recalled that the law authorizing surgical castration, which had just been validated by the country’s High Constitutional Court, was contrary to international treaties. The same day, she said she was “regularly frustrated” – as a partner who helped improve the island’s road network – to see that the road maintenance fund did not have the means to maintain this network.

In the wake of this position, the new head of Malagasy diplomacy Rafaravavitafika Rasata sent a letter to the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs. The minister would have expressed “her dissatisfaction with the press conference [during which ambassador Isabelle Delattre had expressed doubts about the effectiveness of surgical castration as a solution to eradicate rape]”. It is also in this letter, confirms the spokesperson for the European Commission in charge of Foreign Affairs Nabila Massrali to RFI, that the minister “asked the European Union to replace its ambassador”.

A request to leave, underlines the spokesperson, which had not been discussed at all during the summons of Isabelle Delattre by the minister, a few days earlier. The request is currently being examined, confirms Brussels.

These tensions with those in power are not new. Since her arrival on the Big Island in September 2022, the European representative has often spoken candidly on subjects which have had the gift of irritating at the highest level of the State.

From these famous “recommendations of the 2018 electoral observation mission never put into practice”, to “the tax evasion which is rife on Malagasy soil”, the diplomat has always answered questions from the media, even if it meant making the public shudder. executive.

The departure of the ambassador almost confirmed
In Brussels, the EU noted that there was a breakdown of trust making the functioning of the Malagasy embassy “impossible”.

The European Union delegation confirmed to RFI in the morning that the ambassador’s departure was almost complete. These are the modalities that now remain to be clarified. She should therefore leave her position during the southern winter (in July/August), but the recruitment procedure to find her a successor should take more time.

“Our desire is to maintain good relations with Madagascar and that is why we are complying with the request,” confirms a diplomatic source from the delegation. “But his departure under these conditions will inevitably have consequences, political and financial,” she warns.

On the foreign chancellery side, we are taking note. “Does this mean that embassies are simply expected to sign checks and keep their mouths shut? » dares to scold a diplomat.

This article is originally published on rfi.fr

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