Australia sticks to US nuclear subs despite French criticism

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s prime minister says he remains committed to building a fleet of submarines powered by U.S. nuclear technology despite the French president describing the plan as a “confrontation with China.” The previous Australian government infuriated President Emmanuel Macron last year by canceling a contract for a French-built fleet of conventionally powered submarines and opting instead for nuclear-powered versions. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has stood by Australia’s embrace of U.S. nuclear technology since he was elected in May. Macron has told reporters that French diesel-electric submarines are acceptable, but nuclear-powered ones are in confrontation with China. Albanese said on Friday he stands by his pursuit of a nuclear-powered submarine fleet.