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  • The Franco-Soviet Treaty of Mutual Assistance was a bilateral treaty between the two countries with the aim of encircling Nazi Germany in 1935 in order to reduce threat from central Europe. It was pursued by Louis Barthou, the French foreign minister, but he was assassinated before negotiations were finished. His successor, Pierre Laval, was skeptical of both the desirability and the value of an alliance with the Soviet Union. However, after the declaration of German rearmament in March 1935 the French government forced the reluctant foreign minister to complete the arrangements with Moscow that Barthou had begun. The pact was concluded in Paris on May 2, 1935 and ratified by the French government in February 1936. Ratifications were exchanged in Moscow on March 27, 1936, and the pact went into effect on the same day. It was registered in League of Nations Treaty Series on April 18, 1936. On May 2, 1935, France and the USSR concluded the pact of mutual assistance. Laval had taken the precaution of ensuring that the bilateral treaty agreement was strictly compatible with the multilateral provisions of the League of Nations Covenant and Locarno Treaties.

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