By SYLVIE CORBET
PARIS (AP) — French President Emmanuel Macron is urging European nations to seek more independence on airspace defense. He advocates against relying too much on the U.S., a long-divisive issue that takes on new urgency because of Russia’s war in Ukraine. Macron said Monday that Europeans should build their own airspace protection strategy. He made the closing speech of a conference in Paris gathering defense ministers and other representatives of 20 European countries. France has been openly critical of German-led plans for improved European air defense capabilities. The French government says the plans don’t do enough to preserve European sovereignty because they are expected to be largely based on U.S. and Israeli industry.