Western troops on the ground in Ukraine is not ‘ruled out’ in the future, Macron says

Western troops on the ground in Ukraine is not ‘ruled out’ in the future, Macron says

The Associated Press reports:

French President Emmanuel Macron said Monday that sending Western troops on the ground in Ukraine is not “ruled out” in the future after the issue was debated at a gathering of European leaders in Paris, as Russia’s full-scale invasion grinds into a third year.

The French leader said that “we will do everything needed so Russia cannot win the war” after the meeting of over 20 European heads of state and government and other Western officials.

“There’s no consensus today to send in an official, endorsed manner troops on the ground. But in terms of dynamics, nothing can be ruled out,” Macron said in a news conference at the Elysee presidential palace.

Macron declined to provide details about which nations were considering sending troops, saying he prefers to maintain some “strategic ambiguity.”

The meeting included German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Poland’s President Andrzej Duda as well as leaders from the Baltic nations. The United States was represented by its top diplomat for Europe, James O’Brien, and the U.K. by Foreign Secretary David Cameron.

Duda said the most heated discussion was about whether to send troops to Ukraine and “there was no agreement on the matter. Opinions differ here, but there are no such decisions.”

Poland’s president said he hopes that “in the nearest future, we will jointly be able to prepare substantial shipments of ammunition to Ukraine. This is most important now. This is something that Ukraine really needs.”

Macron earlier called on European leaders to ensure the continent’s “collective security” by providing unwavering support to Ukraine in the face of tougher Russian offensives on the battlefield in recent months. [Continue reading…]

The Guardian reports:

Volodymyr Zelenskiy has given a figure for the number of Ukrainian battlefield deaths in the war with Russia for the first time, acknowledging that 31,000 soldiers have been killed and saying 2024 will be decisive for the outcome of the conflict.

Speaking in Kyiv a day after the two-year anniversary of Vladimir Putin’s invasion, the Ukrainian president said he believed his country would win despite recent military setbacks. He conceded western weapons were in short supply and were crucial at a time when his troops were spectacularly outgunned.

They were running low on ammunition and at one point late last year were firing one shell for every twelve unleashed by the Russians, he said. The ratio was now 1:7. “They have a great superiority,” he admitted. [Continue reading…]

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