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Macron tells Congress of 'special' US-French bond

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French President Emmanuel Macron gestures as he is introduced before speaking to a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 25, 2018. Standing behind him are Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis., (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON (AP) — French President Emmanuel Macron drew on the shared history and "special bond" of U.S.-French relations as he opened a joint meeting of Congress

Macron told Congress, "the American and French people have had a rendezvous with freedom."

In recounting common bonds from the earliest days of United States, he was telling of a meeting between Ben Franklin and the French philosopher Voltaire, "kissing each other's cheeks."

In an apparent reference to his friendly meetings this week with President Donald Trump, he said, "It can remind you something."

Macron was speaking Wednesday as part of his visit to the United States. It's the first time a president from France has addressed Congress in more than a decade, but follows a tradition of foreign leaders appearing at the U.S. Capitol.