French President Emmanuel Macron Weighs In On Troops To Ukraine

The leaders of the French parliamentary parties and French President Emmanuel Macron held a meeting on the morning of March 7, and then later briefed them on the frontline situation in Ukraine and his vision of French support for Kyiv.

Based on the comments made by French Party leader Fabien Roussel and National Rally leader Jordan Bardella, Macron confirmed to them that he had no intention of setting “any limits” or “any red lines” on French support for Ukraine.

Summing up Macron’s remarks, French Green Party Chairwoman Marine Tondelier noted that “setting limits for ourselves” would give Russian President Vladimir Putin a “comparative advantage.”

“The president was very serious about the necessity of rapidly mobilizing additional resources to combat the Russian threat in Ukraine,” Bertrand Pancher, one of the politicians at the meeting, told Le Figaro.

Several of those present told Le Figaro on condition of anonymity that Macron had “maps in hands” as he was explaining the risks of Ukraine retreating from the front line in favor of Russian forces.

“He essentially explained to us that if we support Ukraine and yet speak of limiting ourselves, Vladimir Putin is likely to succeed,” one of the sources said. The Champs-Élysées has not yet commented on Macron’s meeting with political party leaders.

On Feb. 17, French President Emmanuel Macron instructed the government to “make a statement to parliament” regarding the bilateral security agreement signed with Ukraine on Feb. 16 and the situation in Ukraine in general, after which there will be “debates and votes.”

For the second week in a row, Europe has been discussing Macron’s resonant statement about the possibility of sending Western troops to Ukraine.

Defence Minister Sebastien Lecornu, however, said the fuss caused by Macron’s initial remarks after a conference of Ukraine’s European allies on Feb. 26 resulted from his comments being “taken out of context.”

“There were hypotheses put on the table, but not combat ground troops as may have been said here or there,” he told broadcaster BFMTV, noting that Macron had reaffirmed that France would not be a “co-belligerent” in the conflict.

“But between the transfer of arms and co-belligerence – direct war with Russia – have we done everything within that space? Are there paths that we can explore? And notably, paths involving a military presence?” he asked.