French President Emmanuel Macron will travel to Moscow and Kiev next week for mediation efforts in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the Élysée Palace announced in Paris on Friday.
First, Macron will fly to meet Russia’s President Vladimir Putin on Monday, and the following day, a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is on the agenda, the Élysée said.
He had recently spoken to both of them on the phone several times. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz also plans to travel to Moscow “shortly.” A meeting between Macron, Scholz and Polish President Andzrej Duda is also planned in Berlin. According to the Élysée Palace, a date is still being sought.
Both Germany and France have been mediating in the Ukraine conflict for years. In view of the deployment of more than 100,000 Russian soldiers in the border area with Ukraine, it is feared that the Kremlin is planning an invasion of its neighbouring country, a former Soviet republic. Moscow denies this.
It is also thought possible that the Russian side wants to stir up fears in order to persuade NATO to make concessions.