Malagasy President Gabriel Ramanantsoa told diplomats on January the 4th that, while his country was following an open policy in foreign relations, it would not forget old friendships.
GV & TILT SHOTS EXTERIOR Presidential palace (4 shots)
SV Presidential guard
SV President Ramanantaos and wife arrive
TILT Ceiling in palace
LV PAN INT. Walls to President addressing assembled company (2 shots)
SV Guests watch & applaud as President & wife receive diplomats (4 shots)
SV French Ambassador speaks
SV President & wife listen with members of diplomatic corps
GV INT Ceremony continues
Initials ESP/2254 ESP/2312
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Background: Malagasy President Gabriel Ramanantsoa told diplomats on January the 4th that, while his country was following an open policy in foreign relations, it would not forget old friendships.
He was speaking at the last official ceremony in the presidential palace, which is being turned into a national museum.
President Ramanantsoa told the diplomats: "Without disowning old and traditional friendships, we have practised open politics with all the world's countries, except feudal ones." He said it was inevitable that in the near future the republic would have to appeal for capital abroad. But this would not make Malagasy lose sight of its final objective.... to turn the economy over to its people.
Among diplomats at the reception was the French ambassador, M. Maurice Delauney, who had only returned from holiday that day. He had a personal message for General Ramanantsoa from French Prime Minister, M. Pierre Mosmer. It was believed the message contained a reply to a request by Malagasy for negotiations later this month on a revision of Franco-Malagasy cooperation agreements.
SYNOPSIS: The old Presidential Palace in Tananarive... Since the last century, it had been the residence of prime ministers and presidents. But on the fourth of January this year, it took on a new role... it became a Malagasy national museum.
The last official ceremony at the Palace was a glittering function... The Malagasy President, Major-General Gabriel Ramanantsoa, and his wife, gave a formal reception for the foreign diplomatic corps, to thank the envoys for their traditional new year wishes and for their collaboration.
At the palace reception, President Ramanantsoa made special reference to foreign relations.
He told the assembled diplomats that, while Malagasy was practising an open policy in foreign relations, the country would not forget old and traditional friendships.
Earlier in the month, Malagasy had informed France that it wanted to open negotiations towards the end of January on new agreements to govern their relations. Among the diplomats who met President Ramantsoa was the doyen of the corps, M. Maurice Delauney of France...
He had only that day returned from France with a message from his government. It was believed to be a reply to Malagasy's request for new negotiations.