International leaders must keep on talking with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin until he is willing to end the war in Ukraine, France’s Foreign Minister Jean Yves Le Drian said on Sunday.
During an address in Doha, Le Drian said that Putin had not achieved any of his aims, but that there had to be a ceasefire around the bombarded Ukrainian besieged city of Mariupol before there could be talks.
While disclosing about French President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to hold talk with President Putin this week on a ceasefire, Le Drian said to the Doha Forum, “We must keep talking with the Russians, we must continue to speak with President Putin precisely because he has not had the results he thought he would.”
Le Drian further added that, “Russia’s invasion had united Ukraine and given a new impetus to European Union and NATO, while Russia was losing significant markets for its energy exports.
The dialogue must be “clear with no naivety and a lot of firmness,” he said. Mariupol has to be a ceasefire, “as no one can negotiate seriously with a gun to the head. But everyone must speak with Putin so that when the time comes that he thinks the price being paid for the intervention in Ukraine is so high, that it is better to talk, there is a way that allows the way of negotiations, “the French minister added.
Le Drian further said, “It is for these reasons that President Macron continues to talk with President Putin, to obtain the conditions for a ceasefire first and negotiations after.”
Earlier, President Macron alerted against a verbal “escalation” of the conflict after the US President Joe Biden called Putin a “butcher” who cannot remain in power.”
At the same time, the Kremlin has issued a statement, stating that Biden’s comments affected bilateral relations between both nations.