The Elysée assured that Emmanuel Macron had “never discussed anything with Vladimir Putin without the agreement of President Zelensky”, after the latter criticized the French head of state for wanting to “make diplomatic concessions” to the Russia.
“The President of the Republic has never discussed anything with Vladimir Putin without the agreement of President Zelensky. He always said that it was up to the Ukrainians to decide the terms of their negotiations with the Russians”, defended the Elysée to AFP on May 13 while the Ukrainian president, the evening before, reproached to Emmanuel Macron the position he had expressed at the beginning of the week in order to put an end to the Russian military operation in Ukraine. The French president had indeed affirmed on May 9 that, to put an end to the Ukrainian conflict, peace should be built without “humiliating” Russia.
“We must not look for a way out for Russia, and Macron is doing it in vain”, had in reaction regretted Volodymyr Zelensky on May 12 on the Italian television channel RAI 1. “I know that he wanted to obtain results in the mediation between Russia and Ukraine, but there was none,” he said.
“Macron does not need to make diplomatic concessions [à la Russie] now”, still considered Volodomyr Zelensky, qualifying the approach of his French counterpart as “not very correct” when it would allow, according to him, Vladimir Putin to “save face”.
The Ukrainian president also considered that “the time to sit around a table with Russia [était] finished”. “It’s no longer possible,” he said. Volodymyr Zelensky, however, repeated his desire to meet Vladimir Putin, “but only with him, without any mediator, and with a dialogue approach, not [en lançant] ultimatums,” he said. After several rounds of talks between Moscow and kyiv in March, talks have since stalled.
As a reminder, the Russian offensive in Ukraine, denounced by kyiv and the West as a war of invasion, was launched on February 24. According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, this special military operation aims to “demilitarize” and “denazify” Ukraine and to rescue the self-proclaimed Donbass Republics (recognized by Moscow), whose populations are threatened with “genocide”.
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