Western weapons supplied to Ukraine: French official supports Kyiv’s right to strike Russian territory

The chairman of the French National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs Committee has called on France to change its doctrine, like Washington and London, and no longer prohibit Kyiv from striking Russian territory, in an interview with Le Figaro.

In the face of Russia’s spring offensive, which has gained more than 300 km2 of territory in Ukraine in the space of a month, notably in the Kharkiv region, the lines are beginning to move on the use of Western weapons delivered to Ukraine.

From the outset of the war, Ukraine’s Western allies, led by the US, had been telling Ukraine not to strike inside Russian territory in order to reduce the risk of escalation in front of a nuclear power. This was tantamount to defending Ukraine without attacking Russia.

But in early May, London, which supplies the Ukrainians with Storm Shadow cruise missiles, expressly authorized the Ukrainians to strike Russian soil. Last week, the United States followed suit, leaving Kyiv free to decide whether or not to do so.

In this light, the chairman of the French National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs Committee, Modem MP Jean-Louis Bourlanges, issued a statement calling on France “to step out of its restraint and take a decision comparable to that of the British and Americans.” “The time seems ripe,” says the international affairs expert, who points out that Paris “has for months been expressing its desire to be at the forefront of solidarity with Ukraine and inter-allied coordination.”.

“The right to self-defense excludes the right to sanctuary for the aggressor’s territory.”

Jean-Louis Bourlanges, Chairman of the French National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs Committee

For Jean-Louis Bourlanges, “this change in doctrine is perfectly legitimate insofar as it puts an end to the unacceptable asymmetry between the situation of the aggressor and that of the aggressed.” Russian long-range weapons and those supplied to Moscow by its allies, including North Korean ballistic missiles and Iranian drones, have militarily hit the entire territory of Ukraine since the start of the war.

Ukrainian forces are also striking Russia in depth, but so far, they are using home-made weapons, particularly long-range drones, which have recently targeted Russian oil infrastructure.

“In the name of what right can we deny Ukrainians the right to respond blow for blow to the attacks of which they are the victims?” The French MP inquires. And he replies, “The right to self-defense excludes the right to sanctuary for the aggressor’s territory.”

At the same time, he stated that “the friendly states of Ukraine are determined to remain non-belligerent.” Therefore, the issue is not about their intervention in the theater of operations, but rather about lifting an unjustifiable taboo.

For several weeks, the Kremlin has been warning Western nations against using weapons delivered to Ukraine on its territory. The Russian Ministry of Defense specifically targeted France, alleging that Ukraine had used French Hammer-guided aerial bombs to target the Russian region of Belgorod, which borders the Kharkiv region, where the Russian invaders have launched a new offensive, capturing a dozen villages across the border.

In the new assault on the Kharkiv region, Russians bombard Ukrainian settlements from Russian territory. It prompts Ukrainians to act to prevent further strikes.

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