Macron Calls Russian State Media 'Mendacious Propaganda' to Putin's Face
May 31, 2017, 06:29
"All use of chemical weapons will be the object of reprisals and of an immediate riposte on the part of the French", Mr Macron said.
Considering that Versailles was a prestigious place from which the royal power of a France was exercised, notably as the world's leading power during the reign of Louis XIV, Macron probably sought to indicate that Paris treats as equal with Moscow and subscribed to analysis that indicates that France has little reason to blush against Russian Federation. Despite being on different sides in the war, Macron also accepted representatives of the Syrian leader should be at future talks. Mr. Macron is the first Western leader to speak to Mr. Putin after the Group of Seven summit over the weekend, where relations with Russian Federation were a key topic.
Mr Putin, seemingly unfazed during the conference in Versailles, later vehemently denied any suggestion that Russian Federation sought to influence the election speaking to reporters in Paris. It started with a firm but brief handshake with Mr Putin - nothing like his white-knuckle clasping contest with Donald Trump, the United States president, at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit.
The Macron-Putin relationship got off to a less-than-ideal footing during Macron's presidential campaign.
Moscow strongly denied all allegations of meddling in the French election that Macron won May 7.
Macronalso said he and Putin were agreed the time was right for a new round of peace talks on Ukraine in the "Normandy format" which groups Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine. Macronsaid this of his "frank" exchange with Putin: "We have disagreements, but at least we talked about them".
The visit comes seven months after Putin cancelled a trip to Paris for the opening of a Russian cathedral complex near the Eiffel Tower in a spat over Syria with Hollande, who had said Russia's bombing of Aleppo could amount to war crimes. "I will do everything to ensure that the 2018 election campaign is conducted in the same way - in strict accordance with the law and the Constitution", Putin said.
Mr Putin appeared to support Mr Macron's nationalist rival Marine Le Pen during the 2017 presidential campaign.
"No major problem in the world can be solved without Russia", Macron said.
Media close to Mr Putin led a vicious campaign against Mr Macron, portraying him as a greedy banker counting stacks of banknotes, calling him a "sodomite" and his wife Brigitte a "paedophile".
Russian Federation is a strong supporter of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad whereas, as Putin adviser Yuri Ushakov said before the visit, France "is among the countries with a very severe stance towards [Assad's] regime".
The Versailles exhibition commemorates a visit to France 300 years ago by Peter the Great, known for his European tastes.
"Our absolute priority is the fight against terrorism and the eradication of terrorist groups and Daesh in particular", he said, using an alternate name for the Daesh group that has claimed several deadly attacks in France.
And both leaders agreed they did not want Syria - where Russian Federation is propping up the government of President Bashar Assad - to collapse into a failed state. Western sanctions, imposed after Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014, have been ratcheted up since pro-Russian rebels carved out a breakaway region in eastern Ukraine.
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