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France is ready to send hundreds of soldiers to Romania

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France is prepared to send hundreds of soldiers to Romania and would be in charge of setting up an international force for the defense of that NATO member country that borders with Ukraine, if the Atlantic Alliance decides.

The message is from the French Defense Minister, Florence Parly, who in an interview this Saturday with the France Inter radio station emphasized that this deployment, if it occurs, “is not intended to contribute to any military escalation.”

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The reason is that “the dialogue continues and we are convinced that we have to resolve this conflict through dialogue and diplomatic solutions,” Parly said. He recalled the initiatives of Paris in this line, such as the telephone conversation that its president, Emmanuel Macron, had yesterday with the head of the Kremlin, Vladimir Putin.

But at the same time, the French minister said that “we are realistic, we are lucid and we are preparing”, in view of the movements of several tens of thousands of Russian soldiers in recent weeks around the border with Ukraine, with maneuvers these last few days in Belarus.

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For this reason, he reiterated that “France is ready, if NATO decides, to deploy military elements in Romania”, specifically “several hundred men”.

Parly, who recalled that France already has military forces in Estonia that participate in reinforcing the defense of that Baltic country against potential threats from Russia, specified that in Romania his proposal is to act as a “framework nation” of the international force of the NATO that could be sent there.

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“It is about -according to the Minister of Defense- to show that we are willing to defend the countries (of the Atlantic Alliance) that are closer to this zone of tension” whose center is Ukraine.

He noted that Romania is not only a country bordering Ukraine, but also has a maritime frontage on the Black Sea, like Ukraine itself and Russia.

In their telephone conversation, Macron and Putin reiterated their “important” disagreements on the tension in Ukraine, but promised to continue the dialogue. The Russian president assured the Frenchman that he did not want confrontation, although he repeated the demands that he has made to NATO and that he considers necessary for his security.

Some demands include that Ukraine should never enter NATO and that offensive military forces and equipment be withdrawn from countries close to its borders that belonged to the former Soviet bloc, such as Romania, which Moscow would also like to see outside NATO. Atlantic Alliance.

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Source: Elcomercio

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