The paradox is that Putin is not an unpleasant person

French President Emmanuel Macron has said that the “paradox” of his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, is that he is not personally an “unpleasant” person.

Macron took part in Saturday’s episode of Les Rencontres du Papotin – a show in which autistic journalists interview famous people, writes

“First of all, when you get to know him, he’s not unpleasant. That’s the paradox, you see,” Macron said in the interview, which was recorded at the end of November.

Macron said that Putin “tried to explain to him that Ukraine threatens him because through it the Europeans and the Americans threaten the security of Russia.”

“I think nothing can justify starting a war. In fact, he started this war to regain the territories and expand the perimeter of Russia to the former empire. He took a very big responsibility for himself, for his people, obviously for the people of Ukraine and for all of us. That’s how I see things,” Macron said.

Macron has long been a proponent of maintaining a dialogue with Putin since his invasion of Ukraine in February last year.

In the summer, he angered Kyiv by saying that Western governments should not “humiliate” the Russian president.

In recent days, however, the French leader has become the first Western ally to agree to send Western armored vehicles to Ukraine, a major policy shift.

In his televised New Year’s address, Macron also promised Ukrainians that France “will lead you to victory” – the first time he has explicitly backed a victory for Kyiv on the battlefield.


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