Scholz-Macron meeting today: Explosive talks on Ukraine expected

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Emmanuel Macron (left) and Olaf Scholz after a meeting in December. © Dursun Aydemir/Imago

The Ukraine crisis continues to smolder – and a marathon of talks is underway. Olaf Scholz and Emmanuel Macron meet on Tuesday. The pressure on Germany is growing.

  • Concerns about an escalation on the Russian-Ukrainian border are growing – the focus is also on Germany’s reaction.
  • Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron will meet on Tuesday (25 January).
  • Criticism of the German attitude in the crisis comes from Poland.

Berlin – The Ukraine conflict keeps the EU in suspense: Early on Tuesday evening (January 25), Chancellor Olaf Scholz* (SPD) will receive French President Emmanuel Macron* in Berlin for talks. The most burning issue will then be the situation on the border between Russia and eastern Ukraine.

A video conference had already been scheduled the evening before. The participants – including US President Joe Biden*, Macron and Scholz – once again expressed their desire for a diplomatic solution and threatened Moscow with serious consequences in the event of further aggression against Ukraine, as the governments in Washington and Berlin announced.

Scholz and Macron discuss the Ukraine crisis – next round of talks on Wednesday

The German government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit* then announced that the group had “assured their full support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine”. Everyone had agreed that questions of security and stability in Europe had to be solved through negotiations.

On Wednesday, in turn, representatives of Russia and Ukraine want to meet in Paris for talks. Together with France and Germany, a meeting should take place at the consultant level in the so-called Normandy format, it said on Monday from Élysée circles. In terms of content, it should be about negotiating humanitarian measures and setting a date on which Ukraine and separatists will discuss a law on the status of Donbass. It should also be about considerations by Ukraine* for the time after the intended reintegration of the breakaway areas in eastern Ukraine.

Russia in focus: “Normandy Format” a factor again? Poland criticizes Scholz

France and Germany are mediating in the Normandy format conflict between Ukraine and Russia that has been going on since 2014. However, the peace plan agreed in Minsk in 2015 is on hold. According to UN estimates, more than 14,000 people have been killed in fighting between Ukrainian government forces and pro-Kremlin separatists in Ukraine’s Donbass region. Western countries have recently repeatedly expressed concern that the conflict could escalate militarily if Russian troops invaded.

Russia, on the other hand, blames the West for the heightened tensions in the conflict with Ukraine. The Kremlin has repeatedly denied planning an attack on Ukraine. He accused the West of an anti-Russian “information campaign” and “hysteria.” Rather, the growing danger of an “attack” comes from the Ukrainian side.

There is also criticism of Germany for completely different reasons: Poland is critical of the Federal Republic’s position in the Ukraine crisis. “I am concerned about the situation in Ukraine and the reactions of our neighbors in Germany to the threat from Russia,” Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki wrote on Facebook. Also reported that Wall Street JournalGermany is effectively preventing its NATO partner Estonia from providing its own military aid to Ukraine by denying the Baltic state export licenses for German weapons to Ukraine.

Scholz-Macron meeting in Berlin: Other topics on the agenda

For Scholz and Macron, however, other items are also on the agenda: It is about the French Council Presidency, the German G7 Presidency, but according to the Federal Government also about other current international and bilateral issues.

On January 1st, France took over the EU Council Presidency for six months. Since then, Germany has chaired the group of seven major industrial nations for one year. (AFP / fn / dpa / rtr) * is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.

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