Home » OVERALL ROUNDUP: Macron doesn’t rule out troops for Ukraine | 02/27/24

OVERALL ROUNDUP: Macron doesn’t rule out troops for Ukraine | 02/27/24

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OVERALL ROUNDUP: Macron doesn’t rule out troops for Ukraine |  02/27/24

KIEV/PARIS (dpa-AFX) – In order to support Ukraine in its defensive battle against Russia, French President Emmanuel Macron is no longer ruling out the use of ground troops by his country. Nothing can be ruled out to prevent a Russian victory in Ukraine, Macron said after concluding a Ukraine aid conference in Paris on Monday evening. At the meeting of over 20 heads of state and government there was no agreement on the deployment of ground troops, but nothing could be ruled out in the future course of the war.

“There is no consensus today about officially sending ground troops,” said Macron. “But nothing can be ruled out in the dynamic. We will do everything necessary to ensure that Russia cannot win this war.” Many people who said “never, never” today are the same people who said two years ago “never, never tanks, never, never airplanes, never, never longer range missiles.” Today the discussion is about becoming faster and stronger in the delivery of tanks and missiles. “So anything is possible if it is helpful to achieve our goal,” said the French president.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) also took part in the aid conference. He had only recently clearly rejected the delivery of Taurus cruise missiles to Ukraine, citing the risk of Germany becoming involved in the war. “German soldiers must not be linked to the goals that this system achieves at any point or place. Not even in Germany,” said Scholz on Monday at the dpa editorial conference in chief. From his point of view, the use of Taurus would only be possible with the participation of his own German personnel. That is why this is not currently on the agenda.

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Ukraine has been defending itself against the Russian war of aggression for a good two years. Given the increasing pressure from Russian troops on various sectors of the front, the country urgently needs more weapons and supplies of ammunition. While the US continues to struggle over a $60 billion aid package that is pending in Congress, the conference participants in Paris agreed to provide more aid to Ukraine more quickly. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who joined the conference at short notice with a video message, had called for further help so that Russia does not expand its aggression to other countries.

Countries agree on military aid

At the meeting it was decided to form a coalition that would supply Ukraine with medium and long-range missiles and bombs for strikes far behind Russian lines, Macron said. In the short term, additional ammunition should also be mobilized for Ukraine from our own stocks and from third countries. Among other things, they also agreed on initiatives to defend countries that are directly threatened by the Russian offensive in Ukraine, especially Moldova. Macron also said they wanted to support Ukraine on its border with Belarus with non-military forces. It was also about defusing mines.

There is currently no decision to deliver French Mirage fighter jets. However, we are still checking which French military material could help Ukraine, said Macron, who wants to travel to Ukraine himself by mid-March. France also supports considerations of using common debt to finance European defense spending in view of the war in Ukraine. Similar to the Corona crisis, all European countries are affected by Russia’s aggression, which justifies the special route of shared debt.

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Zelensky is also pushing for further help from the USA

Ukrainian President Zelensky also insisted in an interview with the US broadcaster CNN that new military aid for his country should be approved quickly. If there is no support, Ukraine will not be able to boast any new successes, Zelensky said in the interview recorded on Sunday. If Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin manages to push back the Ukrainian army, it would also mean further human losses. The aid package from Washington worth almost $60 billion has already passed the Senate, but is being blocked by Republicans in the House of Representatives.

Zelenskyj: It all started in Crimea

Zelenskyj commemorated the occupation of the Crimean peninsula by Russia exactly ten years ago on Monday. “It all started in Crimea – this Russian revanchism, this Russian war,” he said in his nightly video address. This day determined the fate of international security and international relations.

Russian special forces without national insignia on their uniforms, then also called “green men,” had begun occupying the peninsula and disarming Ukrainian units. On March 18, 2014, the peninsula was finally integrated into Russian territory by the State Duma in Moscow. This decision is still not internationally recognized today.

Zelensky emphasized that Crimea must return to Ukrainian sovereignty. “It is right there, in Crimea, that Russian evil must suffer a decisive defeat,” he said. The reconquest of all territories previously occupied by Russia, including Crimea, is one of Ukraine’s declared war goals in the defensive battle against Moscow’s military. Russia has now annexed the occupied territories and considers them sovereign territory.

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Fighting continues to be fierce in Ukraine

Russian attackers and Ukrainian defenders continued to engage in fierce battles on the various sectors of the Ukrainian front. The General Staff in Kiev said in its evening front report that 79 combat operations were registered during the day. The Russian troops were also supported with 58 air strikes. Particularly serious Russian attacks were reported around the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka, from which Ukrainian troops had recently withdrawn. According to Ukrainian accounts, the Russian soldiers tried to expand on this success with further territorial conquests. The Russian military spoke of a “positive dynamic” that needed to be exploited. There were air alarms again in many places on Tuesday night.

That will be important on Tuesday

US President Joe Biden meets congressional leaders over blocked Ukraine aid. Republican MPs from the right-wing fringe have been opposing this for a long time./cha/DP/zb

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