The suggestion from Emmanuel Macron the West should consider “guarantees” to give Vladimir Putin after the war, sparked outrage in Ukraine
The French President claimed Europe should discuss “how to give guarantees to Russia the day it returns to the negotiating table”.
He added: “One of the essential points we must address — as President Putin has always said — is the fear that NATO comes right up to its doors, and the deployment of weapons that could threaten Russia.”
But Mr Macron’s comments could risk the security of Western allies, according to one expert, who warned Putin could use them as a way to divide the West further.
Dr Helena Ivanov, Associate Research Fellow at the Henry Jackson Society, told Express.co.uk: “Macron’s comments obviously carry great significance given France’s role in the EU and what this means for the overall EU approach to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“Whilst we can assume that Macron’s recent comments are probably caused by his fear that not providing any security guarantees to Russia may lead to escalations in the future, making such comments is not prudent.
“For one, such comments are likely to provide Putin and his supporters more leverage in making further demands.
“In addition, such comments are likely to jeopardise the unity between western allies against Russia, as many western countries do not want to give any concessions or security guarantees to the Russian regime.”