‘Don’t bargain behind our back’ Macron told ‘not to spare’ Putin in warning from Ukraine

Macron accused of 'lacking firmness' with Putin says expert

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EU leaders French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi met Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who hopes they will agree to his demand for more artillery weapons and ammunition for Ukrainians. Because of his recurrent phone talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin to negotiate peace, Ukrainian fighters also have a clear message for President Macron not to “bargain behind our back.” The French President is reportedly “perceived” among Ukrainians as “lacking firmness towards Vladimir Putin”, French war reporter Michel Scott reports.

Reporting from the war-torn Donbas region on French broadcaster LCI, Mr Scott said: “The message that is directly addressed to Emmanuel Macron is: do not spare Moscow by vain attempts at dialogue. Above all, do not bargain behind our back. The French president is sometimes perceived as lacking firmness toward Vladimir Putin.

“As head of state militarily, the most powerful of the European Union, he is a weighty support but he could be even more so, we are told here, by words and by attitude, because all these fighters tell us that they feel that they are not only defending their homeland, their national territory but also the whole of Europe.”

Emmanuel Macron’s diplomatic efforts to bring peace in Ukraine have sparked backlash on the international stage over recent weeks.

His latest remarks that Putin “should not be humiliated”, to preserve the chances of a diplomatic solution, have caused tensions with Ukraine. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted that such calls “humiliate France.”

In a blow to President Macron’s remarks, Polish President Andrzej Duda said: “Did anyone speak like this with Adolf Hitler during World War II? Did anyone say that Adolf Hitler must save face? That we should proceed in such a way that it is not humiliating for Adolf Hitler?… I have not heard such voices.”

Before and during the war, President Macron has failed to bring about a truce despite multiple phone talks with Putin.

Now, he alongside his two EU counterparts, Olaf Scholz and Mario Draghi, are expressing their support to Ukraine by walking around ruined buildings and wrecked cars in the town of Irpin, close to the Kyiv capital, where heavy fighting took place in the early stages of the invasion.

“Irpin, like Bucha, has long since become a symbol of the unimaginable cruelty of the Russian war, of senseless violence,” Chancellor Scholz tweeted. “The brutal destruction in this city is a memorial – this war must come to an end.”

“We will rebuild everything”, said Prime Minister Draghi. “They destroyed the kindergartens, they destroyed the children’s gardens. Everything will be rebuilt. They have already started.”

While the visit was praised by world leaders, Russian politicians described the visit as “useless.”

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev tweeted: “European fans of frogs, liverwurst and spaghetti love visiting Kiev. With zero use.

“Promised EU membership and old howitzers to Ukraine, lushed up on gorilka and went home by train, like 100 years ago. All is well. Yet, it won’t bring Ukraine closer to peace. The clock’s ticking.”

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In his daily press conference, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov echoed Mr Medvedev in saying bringing further military support would be “absolutely useless and will cause further damage to the country.”

Those messages go contrary to President Zelensky’s demands since the beginning of the war. He has renewed calls in the face of Russian advances in the key city of Severodonetsk in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) where fighting is raging on, and the conflict could tilt in Russia’s favour.

In a message of defiance towards President Zelensky, the Russian-backed leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) in eastern Ukraine told Russian state media RIA Novosti: “The West’s supplies of new weapons to Ukraine are forcing DPR troops not to stop at the borders of the Donetsk Republic.”


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