Giscard Destaing, Valéry

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Giscard D’estaing, Valéry


Born Feb. 2, 1926, in Koblenz, Germany. French political and state figure.

The son of a financier, Giscard d’Estaing served in the French tank corps in 1944 and 1945 and took part in military actions against Hitler’s Germany. He graduated from the Ecole Poly-technique and the Ecole Nationale d’Administration in Paris. From June to December 1954 he was deputy director of the office of the chairman of the Council of Ministers. First elected to the National Assembly in 1956, he was returned in subsequent elections.

In January 1959, Giscard d’Estaing joined the government as secretary of state for finance. From 1962 to 1966 and from 1969 to 1974 he served as minister for finance and economic affairs. In 1966 he became head of the National Federation of Independent Republicans (known as the Republican Party since 1977). He was president of the French Republic from 1974 to May 1981.

In 1975, Giscard d’Estaing made an official visit to the USSR, during which he signed the Declaration on the Future Development of Friendship and Cooperation Between the USSR and France and agreements on cooperation in several economic areas. He stated numerous times that cooperation with the USSR was one of the foundations of French foreign policy. In 1977, after Soviet-French talks in France, Giscard d’Estaing signed the Soviet-French Declaration and Joint Statement on Reducing International Tension and the Soviet-French Declaration on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.