Macron Indicates France's Readiness for Ground Operations Against Russia in Ukraine

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.17 - 2024 9:19 AM CET

French President Emmanuel Macron still expresses that it may become necessary to have French soldiers in Ukraine.

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French President Emmanuel Macron has stated that France could undertake a military operation in Ukraine against Russia if circumstances require. "At some point — and I do not wish for this nor will I initiate it — ground operations may be necessary to counter Russian forces. France's strength lies in our ability to do so," Macron told La Parisien in a new interview.

He emphasized that Paris must prepare "for any scenario," and the country's General Staff is doing just that. Macron also highlighted that many European states "support France's stance," and these are "by no means small" countries.

Previously, Macron assured that France has no limits in supporting Ukraine to restore lasting peace in Europe. "To achieve this goal, we will not escalate because we do not need another war, but we are ready to say that we have no limits, and we will respond to Russia's actions," the French President explained.

Will Pick Up the Phone if Putin Calls

Moreover, Macron promised to answer the phone if Russian President Vladimir Putin calls. He believes maintaining dialogue with Moscow is his responsibility. "I will listen to what he has to propose. I believe France's role is to be the nerve of the war, as Churchill said," the politician clarified.

In late February, Macron did not rule out the deployment of Western troops to Ukraine. However, at that time, Paris did not speak of conducting ground operations, explaining that the contingent's tasks would be limited to border protection, training, and air defense.

According to Le Monde, France had been developing a plan to send its military to Odessa since the summer of 2022. "In any case, next year I will have to send some guys to Odessa," Macron said at a private event in February, as recounted by Le Monde's sources.