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Deployment of Western troops to Ukraine not ruled out in case front lines breached, Macron says

French President Emmanuel Macron

French President Emmanuel Macron says he does not rule out the deployment of Western troops to Ukraine in case Russia breaks through the Ukrainian front lines and if Kiev makes such a request.

Speaking during an interview with The Economist published on Thursday, the French leader once again stressed that Ukraine receives support from the West, including France, in the face of Russia’s battlefield advances.

Answering a question on whether Western troops will be deployed to Ukraine, Macron said if Russia broke through Ukrainian front lines, such a question would “legitimately” arise.

Back in February, Macron sent shock waves throughout Europe and unsettled France’s allies, including Germany, when said that he would send troops to Ukraine.

He doubled down on his earlier comments in the new interview.

“Absolutely. I’m not ruling anything out, because we are facing someone who is not ruling anything out,” said Macron when asked if he stood by his earlier remarks made on February 26.

Last week, Macron delivering a keynote speech, declaring that Europe is “mortal” and could “die” partly due to the alleged threat posed by Russia’s ongoing “special military operation” in Ukraine that began in February 2022.

“If Russia decided to go further, we will in any case all have to ask ourselves this question” about sending troops, describing his refusal to rule out such a move as a “strategic wake-up call for my counterparts.”

When Macron said he would deploy troops to Ukraine in February, most of France’s allies said they would not send any forces.

Macron’s remarks on Thursday come as some analysts believe that Russia could be on the verge of launching a major new offensive in Ukraine, which is in desperate need of Western military hardware.

“I have a clear strategic objective: Russia cannot win in Ukraine,” Macron further said, accusing Russian President Vladimir Putin of “a power of regional destabilization” and “a threat to Europeans’ security.”

“If Russia wins in Ukraine, there will be no security in Europe. Who can pretend that Russia will stop there? What security will there be for the other neighboring countries, Moldova, Romania, Poland, Lithuania and the others?” the French president asked.

Ukraine war unlikely to end soon: Top US spy

Speaking to the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines said developments trending both at home and abroad are in Putin’s favor and that he will likely press on with “aggressive tactics” in Ukraine.

“Putin’s increasingly aggressive tactics against Ukraine, such as strikes on Ukraine’s electricity infrastructure, are intended to impress Ukraine that continuing to fight will only increase the damage to Ukraine and offer no plausible path to victory,” she added.

“These aggressive tactics are likely to continue and the war is unlikely to end anytime soon,” Haines stressed.

Russia has repeatedly warned that the conflict in Ukraine could be prolonged due to the support of Western countries, on top of them the US, for Kiev. 

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