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French President Emmanuel Macron and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday pledged their backing for the alliance of car giants Renault and Nissan, despite the strains caused by the arrest of the alliance's former boss Carlos Ghosn.
Paris and Tokyo insist their relations are based on a "special partnership" rich in economic and military cooperation.
Charges - Misconduct - Ghosn - Ingredient - Arrest
But the charges of alleged financial misconduct against Ghosn, a French national, have introduced a tricky ingredient since his initial arrest in November.
Abe held talks and lunch with Macron on the first stop of a major tour of Europe and North America to press the priorities of Japan's presidency of the G20 ahead of the Osaka summit in late June.
Ghosn - Case - Auto - Tycoon - Charges
But the Ghosn case loomed large, with the once-revered auto tycoon hit with fresh charges on Monday in his fourth indictment.
Macron and Abe indicated that the case should not affect the strategic alliance between Renault and Nissan, which is backed up by a cross-shareholding and has existed since 1999, the Elysee Palace said.
Leaders - Attachment - Renault-Nissan - Alliance - Anniversary
The two leaders "reaffirmed their attachment to the Renault-Nissan alliance which is going to celebrate its 20th anniversary and is a major symbol of industrial cooperation between France and Japan," it said in a statement.
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