Russian-Ukrainian crisis: Macron pledges to prevent Russia from winning the war in Ukraine

French President Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech during the conference of French ambassadors at the Elysee Palace in Paris. Photo/PA

French President Emmanuel Macron pledged to maintain France’s humanitarian, economic and military support for Ukraine and to strengthen European unity in order to put pressure on Russia and prevent it from winning the war in this country.

“We cannot let Russia win the war militarily,” Macron said in a speech to French ambassadors at the Elysee Palace.

He set himself the goal of allowing Ukraine either to win militarily or to be put in a position of strength to achieve “a negotiated peace”.

“We have to prepare for a long war,” Macron said, adding that this would mean escalating tensions around Ukraine’s nuclear power plants.

Macron said France strongly supports the International Atomic Energy Agency mission which arrived at the Zaporizhzhia power plant on Thursday to assess its safety. The French president suggested he would call his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin after the end of the IAEA mission.

Macron has promised to “keep talking” to Russia despite criticism from some countries, notably in Eastern Europe, which take a tough stance against Moscow. “We must do everything to make a negotiated peace possible” when Russia and Ukraine are ready to sit down for talks, he said.

“We must not let Europe be divided” over the war in Ukraine and its consequences, Macron said, adding that the EU must not align itself with the “warmongers” or allow the countries of Europe of the East to act alone to support Kyiv.

In a nearly two-hour speech meant to lay out French diplomacy’s goals for the coming year, Macron hailed the views expressed by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz earlier this week in Prague as “fully in line” with his own plea for a stronger, more independent and more sovereign Europe.

Macron called on Europe to “defend” its freedoms and values ​​and to “fight” for them.

He also urged French diplomats to fight more aggressively against disinformation, fake news and propaganda spread on social media.

Paris needs to use communication tools to “break the Russian, Chinese or Turkish storytelling” and be able to “say when France is wrongly attacked, to say what France has really done”, he said. he says.

Christi C. Elwood