Le Pen sides with Macron on ‘genocide’ in Ukraine
The term “genocide” should not be used regarding alleged war crimes, French opposition frontrunner said
French opposition frontrunner Marine Le Pen said she would not use the term “genocide” regarding Russia’s military action in Ukraine. The position, which she voiced during a TV interview on Thursday, coincides with that of her election rival, incumbent President Emmanuel Macron, whose job she aims to take.
The term “legally corresponds to an extremely precise definition which cannot be given at this phase of the conflict,” the opposition candidate told France 2. Macron likewise refused to adopt the definition during his appearance on the channel on Wednesday. Both French presidential candidates said they believed that Russian troops committed war crimes in Ukraine by harming civilians.
The accusation of genocide came from Kiev after Russia withdrew troops from the region surrounding the Ukrainian capital. Ukrainian officials presented what they claimed to be evidence of war crimes committed by Russian soldiers in the town of Bucha. President Volodymyr Zelensky claimed the finds proved that Moscow wanted to eradicate the Ukrainian population.
The term “genocide” was used by US President Joe Biden in a speech in Iowa on Tuesday, where he reiterated his administration’s claim that inflation in his country was to be blamed on Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“Your family budget, your ability to fill up your tank, none of it should hinge on whether a dictator declares war and commits genocide half a world away,” he said.
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday that he too believed that the term was applicable.
“There are official processes around determinations of genocide, but I think it’s absolutely right that more people be talking and using the word genocide in terms of what Russia is doing, what Vladimir Putin has done,” Trudeau said at a news conference.
Moscow denied allegations made against its troops and said Kiev was misrepresenting and fabricating evidence to back its claims. Russia said its military plan for Ukraine involves targeting only military infrastructure. It blamed the Ukrainian government for prolonging the conflict by refusing to negotiate peace in good faith.