Russia-Ukraine Conflict: Russia must 'immediately' end military operations in Ukraine, says Emmanuel Macron
Russia must "immediately" end military operations in Ukraine, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Friday as he extended solidarity with Kiev.
"France strongly condemns Russia's decision to wage war on Ukraine. Russia must end its military operations immediately," he said in a tweet on Thursday. "France stands in solidarity with Ukraine. It stands with Ukrainians and is working with its partners and allies to end the war."
The Elysee Palace informed that Macron spoke with Ukrainian President Vlodymyr Zelensky during which Zelensky asked for "multiple interventions" to support Ukraine. He also requested "unity in Europe."
Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy said these are among the darkest hours for Europe since World War II.
"A major nuclear power has attacked a neighboring country and is threatening reprisals on any other state that may come to its rescue."
"The European Union will respond in the strongest possible terms. The President of the European Council, [Charles] Michel has called for a meeting of the European Council this evening. And they will agree and provide political guidance to adopt the strongest package, the harshest package of sanctions we have ever implemented," he added.
In a separate statement, EU chief President von der Leyen said the 27 member bloc will present a package of massive and targeted sanctions, to European Leaders for approval.
"With this package, we will target strategic sectors of the Russian economy by blocking their access to technologies and markets that are key for Russia. We will weaken Russia's economic base and its capacity to modernize," she added.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said special military operations are being launched "to protect" the people in the Donbas region. He also warned other countries that any attempt to interfere with the Russian action would lead to "consequences".
Leaders from a number of countries including the UK, the US, Canada, and the European Union have condemned Russia's military operations in the Donbas region.