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Macron to ‘finalize security deal’ during Ukraine visit

Macron to ‘finalize security deal’ during Ukraine visit

by host

PARIS — French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday he plans to sign a bilateral security agreement with Kyiv during a visit to Ukraine next month.

Macron said France would “continue to help Ukraine to hold the front line and protect its skies,” and that the two countries “were finalizing a deal.” Speaking at a Paris press conference, Macron also announced the delivery of 40 Scalp long-range missiles and “several hundred” bombs to Ukraine in the coming weeks.

France has been working on a deal for several months, aiming to shore up Ukraine’s defenses and finances in the long term. Macron’s statement comes in the wake of last week’s visit to Kyiv by British PM Rishi Sunak, during which he signed a bilateral security deal and pledged €3 billion in military aid to Ukraine over the next two years.

European partners are under pressure to up their military support for Ukraine as Russia continues its relentless air strikes and U.S. aid seems stalled in Congress.

Earlier this month, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz issued an unusually stark call to other EU countries to deliver more weapons to Ukraine. The arms deliveries planned so far are “too small,” he said, despite Berlin’s pledge to double its military aid to Kyiv to €8 billion this year.

According to the Kiel Institute, which tallied military aid to Ukraine in the public domain, Germany was the second-highest donor last year after the U.S., with €17.1 billion, followed by the U.K. with €6.6 billion, and then Nordic and Eastern European countries. France, in comparison, has only contributed €0.54 billion, Italy €0.69 billion and Spain €0.34 billion.

Macron also said France and Europe would have to take “new decisions in the weeks and months ahead,” likely a reference to talks in Brussels to resolve a dispute over a €50 billion aid package to Ukraine.

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