- Title: France's Macron urges Putin to respect democracy
- Date: 19th August 2019
- Summary: BORMES-LES-MIMOSAS, FRANCE (AUGUST 19, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, AND HIS WIFE, BRIGITTE MACRON, WAITING FOR RUSSIAN PRESIDENT, VLADIMIR PUTIN, AT ENTRANCE OF HIS SUMMER RESIDENCE FORT DE BREGANCON PUTIN ARRIVING, GIVING FLOWERS TO BRIGITTE MACRON, GREETING EMMANUEL MACRON AND LAUGHING PUTIN, MACRON AND BRIGITTE MACRON POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS IN FRONT OF RUSSIAN, FRENCH AND EUROPEAN UNION FLAGS VARIOUS OF PUTIN, MACRON AND BRIGITTE MACRON TALKING PUTIN AND MACRON SITTING DOWN FOR NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, SAYING: "Of course we're also going to talk about Ukraine where the choices made by (Ukrainian) President (Volodymyr) Zelenskiy really change the situation, I believe. President Putin has had several conversations with him over the last few weeks, and I think for us this offers the chance to revisit this situation, to talk and to prepare for upcoming meetings. In close cooperation with President Zelenskiy and (German) Chancellor (Angela) Merkel, will consider the opportunity for - and this is my hope - a new summit in the Normandy format in the next few weeks if we manage to lay out a way forward." (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, SAYING: "It was under the French presidency of the Council of Ministers of the Council of Europe that we found a solution which allows Russia to take up its place again and it's through that place that we called this summer for the freedom to protest, freedom of expression, freedom of thought, the freedom to stand in elections to a country which is a member of that Council to be completely respected in Russia, because I believe in that European Russia." (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, SAYING: "The president said there were protests in France which resulted in violence, and indeed some protesters were themselves sometimes injured seriously, police officers were seriously wounded, and of course I'm following all that closely and it worries me. But France has always respected not only its constitution, its civil rights but also those of the Council of Europe. And any French citizen can appeal to that European Court of Human Rights and their rights will be defended. The right to protest was protected. When some people breached public order, public order needs to be respected, that accompanies the right to protest. And I'll say right here that in France - this is why not all comparisons are pertinent - protesters stood freely in elections. The 'yellow vests' stood freely in European elections and they'll stand in the local elections and that's quite right. I hope they do express themselves through elections because that cuts out a degree of the conflict." MACRON AND PUTIN DURING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, SAYING: "If we decided, 'We don't agree about lots of things so we're going to turn our backs, do without each other', would that be in our interest? I believe profoundly that it would not. And I am convinced that it is in our interest even when we have disagreements to try to bring ourselves to a common point of view, and to do everything, as I have said many times, to tie Russia and Europe back together. Because I believe that that respects Russia's history, Russia's destiny and it's in our interests." MACRON AND PUTIN DURING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, EMMANUEL MACRON, SAYING: "On Syria, I expressed my fears about Idlib and we'll talk about them in greater detail, but where was France a little more than two years ago on the Syrian question? We put together the small groups, set up forums for discussion and I think we can make a difference on a humanitarian level much more than we did before." MACRON AND PUTIN SHAKING HANDS MACRON AND PUTIN'S HANDS BATHERS ON BEACH IN FRONT OF FORT DE BREGANCON FORT DE BREGANCON SHIP OFF COAST BATHERS ON BEACH SEA AND FORT
- Embargoed: 2nd September 2019 17:57
- Keywords: Idlib democracy Ukraine Council of Europe Macron protests Putin Syria talks
- Location: BORMES-LES-MIMOSAS, FRANCE
- City: BORMES-LES-MIMOSAS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Diplomacy/Foreign Policy,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001ASVX26F
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT CONTAINS SOUNDBITES FROM FRENCH PRESIDENT EMMANUEL MACRON AND VIEWS OF THE FORT WHERE THE MEETING TOOK PLACE. FOR SOUNDBITES FROM RUSSIAN PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN PLEASE SEE 1167-FRANCE-RUSSIA/PUTIN
French President Emmanuel Macron told Russian leader Vladimir Putin on Monday (August 19) that Moscow must abide by fundamental democratic principles, and that it was right to keep a dialogue between the countries to move forward on international crises.
Macron, who was hosting Putin at his summer residence in southern France, said he hoped the two leaders would make progress towards a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Ukraine after its new president offered an olive branch to Putin.
"We called this summer for freedom of protest, freedom of speech, freedom of opinion and the freedom to run in elections, which should be fully respected in Russia like for any member of the Council of Europe," Macron told a joint news conference ahead of their meeting.
"Because I believe in a European Russia," Macron added.
Moscow has been rocked by weekly protests for more than a month after the authorities barred opposition candidates from running in an election for the city's legislature in September.
Macron and Putin said they would also discuss how to de-escalate tensions over Iran, the Syria conflict and arms control issues.
Putin told his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron that he saw no alternative to "Normandy" format heads of state talks on the Ukraine crisis, but stopped short on Monday of signing up to a new summit on the subject.
He said phone conversations with Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskiy had given him cautious grounds for optimism, but stressed that he believed that any meeting aimed at resolving the Ukraine crisis should yield tangible results.
(Production: Clotaire Achi, Johnny Cotton)
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