France “encourages all dialogue” over Ukraine

Joseph Ataman in Paris

France “encourages all dialogue that contributes to a resolution of the conflict [in Ukraine] in accordance with the fundamental interests of Ukraine and international law,” the Elysee Palace said Wednesday, following a call between the Ukrainian and Chinese presidents.

The Elysee said this was the same message French President Emmanuel Macron conveyed to his Chinese counterpart during his visit to China this month.

During this visit, Macron told Chinese President Xi Jinping he was counting on him to “reason” with Russia and help end the war in Ukraine.

At the time, Macron said Russia had “put an end to decades of peace in Europe” and that finding a “lasting peace” that respected internationally recognized borders was “an important issue for China, as much as it is for France and for Europe.”

Macron also stressed a need for discussion “with everyone” including Russia. “We do not simply want an end to the conflict, but respect for Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity, which is the only condition for lasting peace,” he said.

Speaking to reporters alongside Macron, Xi said China was ready to “issue a joint call” with France for the international community to “exercise restraint” and “avoid taking actions that might cause the crisis to further deteriorate.”

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