Ukraine criticized French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday for saying it was important not to “humiliate” Russia, words that, for Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmitro Kuleba, “can only humiliate France.”

Macron has tried to hold a dialogue with Russian President Vladimir Putin since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February. His stance has been repeatedly criticized by some Eastern and Baltic partners in Europe, as they see it undermining efforts to push Putin to the negotiating table. “We must not humiliate Russia so that the day the fighting ends we can build an off-ramp by diplomatic means,” Macron said in an interview with regional newspapers published on Saturday, adding: “I am convinced that France’s role is to be a mediating power.”

Kuleba responded on Twitter: “Calls to prevent the humiliation of Russia can only humiliate France and any other country that requests it.” Russia instead. This will bring peace and save lives.” to prove it.

“I believe, and I told (Putin), that he is making a historic and fundamental mistake for his people, for himself and for history,” Macron said. Asked about the mediation offer on national television, the Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said there was “no point in holding negotiations” with Russia until Ukraine had received new weapons from the West and pushed Russian forces “as far as possible to Ukraine’s borders.”

Russia now occupies about a fifth of the Ukrainian territory, while kyiv is receiving more powerful weapons from the West. “Our armed forces are ready to use (the new weapons)… and then I think we can start a new round of talks from a strengthened position,” David Arakhamia, a Ukrainian parliamentarian and member of the negotiating team, said on Friday.

The United States will supply Ukraine with HIMARS precision rocket systems that will allow it to attack Russian positions from a longer range. France has also supplied offensive weapons, including the Caesar howitzer cannon taken from French army stocks.

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