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Macron refuses to rule out sending ground troops to Ukraine, but without convincing

Photo: Gonzalo Fuentes Pool Agence France-Presse French President Emmanuel Macron on Monday refused to rule out sending troops to Ukraine, arguing that Moscow cannot win.

France Media Agency in Paris


  • Europe

Berlin, London and other European allies of Kiev on Tuesday rejected the comments of French President Emmanuel Macron, believing the day before that the sending of Western troops to Ukraine could not “be excluded”.< /p>

The Kremlin for its part judged that it was “absolutely not in the interests of these countries” to send soldiers to Ukraine. Merely raising this possibility constituted “a very important new element” in the conflict, added Russian presidential spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, while noting that there was “no consensus” on the subject among Westerners.

Asked about the risk of a direct conflict between NATO and Russia, in the event of a military presence in Ukraine, Dmitry Peskov replied that “in this case we should not talk about probability, but about inevitability”.

Monday in Paris, Emmanuel Macron recognized that there was “no consensus today to send ground troops in an official, assumed and endorsed manner.” “But in dynamics, nothing should be excluded. We will do whatever it takes to ensure that Russia cannot win this war,” he added, saying “we are assuming” “strategic ambiguity.”

“Many people who say “Never, never” today were the same people who said “Never tanks, never planes, never long-range missiles” two years ago,” said – he also underlined.

Mr. Macron was speaking at the end of an international conference in support of Ukraine, hastily organized in France in the presence of twenty-seven other countries, at a critical moment for Kiev, awaiting the necessary Western weapons to his survival.

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“No large-scale deployment”

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Tuesday that “no soldiers” would be sent to Ukraine from European or NATO countries: “What was decided between us from the beginning continues to be valid for the future ”, namely “that there will be no troops on the ground, no soldiers sent either by European states or by NATO states on Ukrainian soil.”

His Defense Minister, Oscar Pistorius, mentioned “a proposal for reflection from President Macron that apparently no one followed” on Monday.

On the United Kingdom side, a spokesperson for British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak specified that “a small number” of people sent by London were already there “to support the Ukrainian armed forces, in particular in terms of medical training,” adding, “We are not planning a large-scale deployment.”

Madrid “does not agree” with the idea of ​​”deploying European troops in Ukraine”, according to the spokesperson for the Spanish executive, Pilar Alegria.

Warsaw and Prague also rejected the possibility outlined by Paris. “We are not considering sending our troops to Ukraine and we have a common position on this point” with the Czech Republic, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk declared Tuesday during a press conference with his Czech counterpart Petr Fiala .

Ulf Kristersson, Prime Minister of Sweden which will very soon become NATO's 32nd member, argued that “there is no demand” on the Ukrainian side for ground troops . So “the question is not current”, he insisted, without however excluding this possibility in the future.

NATO “No Plans”

Budapest, the only capital among the Twenty-Seven to have maintained close ties with Moscow after the launch of the invasion of Ukraine two years ago and which for some time blocked new European aid to Kiev, has unsurprisingly displayed his opposition to “sending weapons or soldiers to Ukraine” because “we must end the war, and not deepen and widen it”, according to his head of diplomacy, Peter Szijjarto.

NATO also ruled out any sending of troops to the theater of operations. “NATO and Allies are providing unprecedented military assistance to Ukraine. We have been doing this since 2014 and shifted into high gear after the full-scale Russian invasion. But there are no plans for NATO combat troops on the ground in Ukraine,” an Alliance official told AFP on Tuesday.

Since he received Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in mid-February at the Élysée to sign a bilateral security agreement, Emmanuel Macron has painted a very dark picture of Vladimir Putin's intentions and has tried to position himself at the forefront of support brought to Kiev.

Within the French political class, the possibility of sending troops to Ukraine has raised an outcry among opposition parties, from the radical left to the far right, including the socialists and the right .

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116