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NATO troops in Ukraine: Macron receives encouragement – ​​“Don’t overestimate Russia’s power”

2024-03-01T04:34:59.198Z

Highlights: NATO troops in Ukraine: Macron receives encouragement – “Don’t overestimate Russia’s power”. “If the NATO allies reach an agreement on sending troops, Latvia, Latvia would consider participating,” said a defense ministry spokesman from Lithuania. The Baltic countries, which are considered NATO's Achilles heel because of their proximity to Russia, are overall more positive about the move to send Western troops to Ukraine than their NATO partners in western Europe. Latvia and Lithuania are not fundamentally opposed to the deployment of Western troops.



As of: March 1, 2024, 5:23 a.m

By: Stephanie Munk

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Estonia's Prime Minister believes that an escalation with Putin should not be overestimated.

NATO soldiers in Ukraine should also be an option.

Paris/Tallinn - Emmanuel Macron has so far seemed to be the only one within NATO when it comes to his opinion on Western troops in Ukraine: While the French President aggressively discussed the use of NATO ground troops on Monday (February 26), one denied it State after state said such plans were under discussion.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) also vehemently contradicted Macron.

Estonia, which shares a border of around 300 kilometers with Russia, also joined the countries that contradicted Macron on Tuesday (February 27).

Estonia is not discussing sending troops to Ukraine, Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said on Estonian television. 

But now Kallas, who was wanted by Russian President Vladimir Putin, has spoken in more detail about the possible deployment of ground troops to Ukraine.

And this time the Estonian Prime Minister agreed with Macron.

In an interview with

Stern

, Kallas said, according to

Spiegel

: "It's good that we're discussing all options."

Estonia's Prime Minister Kaja Kallas does not want to rule out the option of sending NATO troops to Ukraine in the fight against Putin.

© Imago (image montage)

Estonia's prime minister reports on troop discussions behind closed doors

Kallas described the discussion at the Paris summit with 20 Western heads of state, after which Macron raised the issue of NATO soldiers.

“We debated very openly behind closed doors in Paris.

There were different proposals, not all of which met with the approval of all sides.” This probably also included the question of whether ground troops were an option.

In the final declaration, Macron emphasized that sending NATO ground troops to the Ukraine war in the fight against Russia should not be ruled out.

There is currently no consensus on this, but this was also the case in earlier discussions about the supply of certain weapons - and later the decision was made to do so.

Scholz sharply disagrees with Macron on NATO troops

Macron was criticized from many quarters for his move.

He is accused of playing carelessly with the possibility that the Ukraine war could escalate into a war between NATO and Russia.

Russia itself also sent an alarming warning to the world.

Chancellor Scholz contradicted Macron particularly emphatically.

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In a video message, the Chancellor made his position clear again: “To be clear: As German Chancellor, I will not send any soldiers from our Bundeswehr to Ukraine.

That applies.

Our soldiers can rely on that.”

Don't overestimate Putin's power - Estonia doesn't want to rule out ground troops either

However, according to Spiegel

, Kallas warned

against ruling out certain options out of fear of Putin.

“We should not be afraid of our own power and should not overestimate Russia's power.” Putin knows that Russia is militarily inferior to NATO and wants a war with NATO “just as little as we want a war with Russia,” said Estonia's Prime Minister.

“The fear of escalation causes us to make ourselves smaller than we are.”

Macron also receives support from the former head of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger.

Macron's push for ground troops was "a bit bold, but not wrong."

It is not the right way to rule out certain measures from the outset, Ischinger said on broadcaster

Welt

.

This makes it easy for Putin to “prepare for what might happen.”

Western troops in the Ukraine war – the Baltics open to the option

The Baltic countries, which are considered NATO's Achilles heel because of their proximity to Russia, are overall more positive about the move to send Western troops to Ukraine than their NATO partners in western Europe.

Latvia and Lithuania are also not fundamentally opposed to the deployment of Western ground troops in Ukraine.

“If the NATO allies reach an agreement on sending troops to Ukraine, Latvia would consider participating,” said a defense ministry spokesman, with similar tones coming from Lithuania.

The debate was also initiated by Slovakia, which warned on Monday (February 26) of an increasing escalation of the war in Ukraine.

Slovak Prime Minister Fico claimed that EU and NATO members were considering sending soldiers to Ukraine.

However, according to an EU insider, Western special forces have long been in Ukraine.

(smu)

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2024-03-01

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