The last of these demands was a clear reference to the Budapest Memorandum, signed in 1994. Under the accord, Russia was among the states that guaranteed Ukraine’s “independence and sovereignty in the existing borders” in return for Ukraine giving up its nuclear arsenal, but it has since been ignored by Mr. Putin.
Since 2019, when he declared the need for the reinvention of “an architecture of security” between the European Union and Russia, Mr. Macron has been insistent on the need to draw Russia into a new “stability order” in Europe.
Although he has condemned Mr. Putin’s “imperial” invasion with firmness, Mr. Macron has apparently not been swayed to reconsider the practicability of any Russian integration into a European security arrangement.
Responding to a tweet from TASS featuring Mr. Macron’s remarks, Nicolas Tenzer, a prominent French political scientist and essayist, commented: “Devastating.”
Dr. Alina Polyakova, president of the Center for European Policy Analysis, a research institute based in Washington, commented on Mr. Tenzer’s tweet, saying: “You know you’re doing something terribly wrong when the Kremlin’s state propaganda praises you. It seems that no matter how brutal Putin is, Macron can’t let go of his flawed vision.”
There is deep suspicion of Mr. Macron’s approach to Russia in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland and other states in the European Union and NATO that were once under the Soviet totalitarian yoke. This has undermined his aspirations to European leadership.
On Feb. 8, shortly before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Mr. Putin set out three demands at a joint news conference with Mr. Macron in Moscow. These were: an end to NATO enlargement; no missile deployments near Russia’s borders; and a reduction of NATO’s military infrastructure in Europe to its levels in 1997, before the Baltic and central European states previously controlled by Moscow joined the alliance.
The United States dismissed the Russian demands as “non-starters” at the time, but Mr. Macron appears to have a more nuanced view.
Source link here