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EU Summit May Discuss Idea of Possibility of Sending Troops to Ukraine - Senior Official

© AFP 2023 / Wojtek RadwanskiA British soldier looks into a telescopic sight as he holds his sniper rifle during the NATO DRAGON-24 military exercise in Korzeniewo, northern Poland
A British soldier looks into a telescopic sight as he holds his sniper rifle during the NATO DRAGON-24 military exercise in Korzeniewo, northern Poland - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.03.2024
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - EU leaders may discuss the statements of French President Emmanuel Macron about the possibility of sending western troops to Ukraine, a senior EU official said on Tuesday.
The leaders could discuss Marcon's statement at the summit, but this agenda point will not be included in the conclusions of the summit, the official said.

French Army Preparing to Take Part in 'Toughest' Conflicts - Chief of Staff

The French army is preparing to participate in "the toughest" conflicts to fend off any potential attack on the country, its chief of staff, Gen. Pierre Schill, said.
"The French army is ready. No matter how the international situation develops, the French can be confident that their soldiers will be ready to respond. To deter any attack and defend its interests, the French army is preparing for the toughest conflicts, declaring and demonstrating it," Schill wrote in an op-ed for Le Monde newspaper amid French President Emmanuel Macron's recent remarks about sending Western troops to Ukraine.
The challenge is to ensure that "the strength demonstrated by our troops reverses the trend" so that it "deters any attacks on France," the French general added.
He also recalled that France relies for defense on its nuclear arsenal and on its "trained army compatible with the armies of the allies," especially in Europe.
French President Emmanuel Macron grimaces on the town hall balcony on occasion of the Charlemagne Prize awarding in Aachen, Germany, Thursday, May 10, 2018 - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.03.2024
Macron ‘Trying to Go Backwards’ to Days of Imperial France?
France is capable of deploying 20,000 soldiers within 30 days and commanding an army of up to 60,000 troops, including allied military personnel, Schill also said. The French armed forces have 121,000 soldiers in total and can call up 24,000 reservists, he added.

Le Monde reported earlier this month that France had first considered the possibility of military deployment to Ukraine last summer and that the weakness of the Ukrainian army was concerning for Paris.

Following a Paris-hosted conference on Ukraine held on February 26, Macron said Western leaders had discussed the possibility of sending troops to Ukraine and, although no consensus had been reached in this regard, nothing could be ruled out. EU countries, including Poland and Germany, hastened to dismiss such plans. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that NATO had no intention of sending its forces to Ukraine.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Russia had taken notice of Macron's remarks and that some of the countries that participated in the Paris meeting on Ukraine had quite a "wise assessment" of the potential dangers of being involved in a conflict with Russia.

France Preparing to Deploy Some 2,000 Servicepeople in Ukraine - Russia’s Intel Chief

France is preparing to send a military unit to Ukraine, and approximately 2,000 servicemen will be deployed at the first stage, Russian Foreign Intelligence Service Director Sergei Naryshkin said on Tuesday.
According to Naryshkin, the Elysee Palace believes that the number of French citizens killed in Ukraine has already reached “above a psychological level.”

“However, the current leadership of the country does not care about the death of ordinary Frenchmen and the concerns of the generals. According to information received by the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, a contingent is already being prepared to be sent to Ukraine. It will be about 2,000 people at the initial stage,” Naryshkin said, as quoted by the press office, adding that publication of sensitive data on French casualties may provoke protests in Paris.

France also admits that it has not seen such military casualties abroad since the Algerian War in the 20th century.
The French military fears that it will not be able to transfer such a significant military unit to Ukraine quietly. Thus, it will become a priority legitimate target for attacks from the Russian armed forces,” the statement read.
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