Kyiv, 16 July 2014 – “European society and French one in particular are not yet ready to perceive Russia as an enemy,” noted Galya Ackerman, Executive Director of the “European Forum-Ukraine”, French writer and journalist at a briefing in the UkraineCrisisMediaCenter. “France signed a contract with Russia for sale of Mistral-class amphibious assault ships after the Russian-Georgian war, it’s true. Paradoxically even following the war in Georgia European society did not start perceiving Russia as an enemy. At that time Dmitry Medvedev was President of the Russian Federation, in whom Europe saw a modern leader, more liberal than Putin, having no connection with KGB, holding reforms, modernizing the economy. Even after the return of Putin at Presidential post the attitude towards Russia was rather friendly”.
In the opinion of Madam Ackerman, it would be possible to stop selling Mistral warships to Russia if the European Union will work out consolidated European policy towards Russia. “Official France declared that sending warships to Russia could be annulled if the European Union introduces new tier of sanctions on Russia. All countries would have to fulfill such a decision as France cannot become the only country to incur losses due to the sanctions. Third tier of sanctions will be followed by cut of working places, termination of French investment in the Russian economy, and we are living in the consumer society, in the society where politicians are expected to ensure economic well-being in the country.”
Galya Ackerman underlined that despite active pro-Russian propaganda in Europe, French media and French society support Ukraine.