Washington DC, 2 December 2022 (TDI): The President of the United States (US), Joe Biden, welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte to the White House on Thursday.

Biden is honoring Macron with the first state dinner of his presidency. Biden declared France the longest ally and an unshakeable partner in the cause of freedom during the arrival ceremony.

Also read: President of France arrives in the US for a State visit

The ceremony took place on the Southern Lawn of the White House. It featured a military honor guard, a red-jacketed colonial band with the Fife and Drum Corps, and national anthems of both countries.

Joint news conference

Both dignitaries participated in a joint news conference at the White House where they discussed matters of immediate concern. At the center of the talks was Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The officials reaffirmed that they are determined to hold Russia accountable for the documented atrocities, and war crimes in Ukraine.

In this vein, Macron stated, “Since the very beginning of this war, we worked very hard together to help Ukraine to resist and to be resilient, and we will reinforce this action.”

“France is working in close cooperation with Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky to help the Ukrainian people resist the Russians.” Macron reiterated.

Also read: Poland, France renew commitment to support Ukraine

At his turn, the US President talked about his potential future plans to meet Russian President, Vladimir Putin. He remarked, “I’m prepared to speak with Putin if there is an interest in him deciding he’s looking for a way to end the war.”

Biden further added, “I think it’s absolutely critical that we support the Ukrainian people. The idea that Putin is ever going to defeat Ukraine is beyond comprehension.”

Biden and Macron also covered several other topics during their meeting, including energy, emerging technologies, trade, and nuclear deterrence.

Notably, Macron brought four gifts with him including a sweater from the House of Saint James and a watch from LIP Horlogerie.

Similarly, Biden presented Macron with a custom mirror made of fallen wood from the White House grounds and a custom vinyl record collection of great American musicians.