Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau has said France should have nothing at all to do with the question of whether the French-speaking province of Quebec separates from the rest of Canada.
GV EXTERIOR: Elysee Palace.
SV INTERIOR: Trudeau seated with Giscard
SV: Trudeau speaking in French at news conference.
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Background: Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau has said France should have nothing at all to do with the question of whether the French-speaking province of Quebec separates from the rest of Canada.
SYNOPSIS: Mr Trudeau made the statement in Paris on Friday (13 May) after talks with French President Valery Giscard D'Estaing at the Elysee Palace. The Canadian leader arrived in France on a private visit on Wednesday (11 May) after attending top-level talks in London. Following lunch talks with the President, Mr Trudeau met journalists.
The main topic was the question of the province Quebec. Mr Trudeau's visit to France follows that of Quebec Intergovernmental Affairs Minister, Claude Morin. It comes at a time of growing concern by the Canadian federal government at the separatist trend in the largely french-speaking province. Mr Trudeau said he believed it was not necessary to separate Quebec from the rest of Canada. He said it could exist under the present constitution and yet keep its French character, language and culture. Later Mr Trudeau said quite bluntly that French should not have 'a goddam thing' to do with the question of Quebec. He said he had not discussed Quebec separatism with the French President but he said, he was convinced that neither President Giscard nor his government would do anything to interfere in Canada's internal affairs.