By John Irish and Michel Rose
PARIS (Reuters) – President Donald Trump will travel to France for the Bastille Day military celebrations on July 14, President Emmanuel Macron’s office said on Wednesday, in a sign the allies are seeking to bolster ties despite differences over climate change.
The French presidency and White House said Trump had accepted an invitation to make the visit, which will also commemorate the U.S. entry into World War One 100 years ago.
“The two leaders will further build on the strong counter-terrorism cooperation and economic partnership between the two countries,” the White House said in a statement.
Macron appears to be broadly aligning his foreign policy with U.S. priorities of tackling terrorism while seeking better ties with Russia.
But the two leaders publicly clashed after Trump said he would pull out of a global accord on action to combat climate change.
“Beyond our differences on some subjects such as climate, it shows the strength and the links in our transatlantic ties and the convergence of views on counter-terrorism and our joint commitment in war zones,” said a French diplomat.
After the United States, France is the biggest contributor to the coalition fighting Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria.
The July 14 festivities see thousands of men and women from France’s army, navy and air force march down the Champs Elysees avenue in Paris. The U.S. military will this year march with French forces.
On July 14, 1789, crowds stormed the Bastille prison, where opponents of the monarchy were held, at the start of the French Revolution.
Plans by Trump to visit Britain have yet to be finalised despite an invitation by Prime Minister Theresa May when she met him in Washington in January.
The prospect of a visit has met opposition in Britain, prompting fears of angry protests, also a possibility in France.
“Donald Trump is violent and there’s no reason for him being here,” a far-left lawmaker and former French presidential candidate said on Wednesday.
“He is not welcome. That’s clear,” Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the France Unbowed movement, told Europe 1 radio.
(Additional reporting by Jean-Baptiste Vey and Steve Holland in Washington; Editing by Brian Love and Andrew Roche)