War in Ukraine, day 209: Macron denounces a “return to the age of imperialism” at the UN tribune

► The invasion of Ukraine is a “return to the age of imperialism”, accuses Macron before the UN

Emmanuel Macron accused Tuesday, September 20, at the rostrum of the United Nations General Assembly, Russia of having provoked a “return of imperialism” having invaded Ukraine. “What we have been witnessing since February 24 is a return to the age of imperialism and colonies. France refuses it and will stubbornly seek peace.hammered the president.

“Who is hegemonic today if not Russia? »wondered the head of state. “Those who are silent today serve despite themselves, or secretly with a certain complicity, the cause of a new imperialism, of a contemporary cynicism which disintegrates our international order without which peace is not possible”he still lamented.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is at the heart of this high-level diplomatic week at the United Nations General Assembly. With in particular a video intervention on Wednesday by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and a Security Council on Thursday at the level of foreign ministers.

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► New calls for referendums in the Donbass

The authorities installed by Moscow in four regions of Ukraine announced on Tuesday September 20 the urgent holding of September 23 and 27 of “referendums” of annexation by Russia, in the midst of the Ukrainian counter-offensive.

Emmanuel Macron called this announcement a “parody”affirming that these referendums will not have “no legal consequences”. “I think it’s a travesty of what was announced by Russia. The only thing that exists is the war decided by Russia, the resistance of Ukraine and the end of the war that we want”, he added. For the President, “this is an additional provocation” who “will have no consequence on our position”.

The Ukrainian presidency has sworn to “to liquidate” the Russian threat, while the Ministry of Defense compared these votes to “the Anschluss” Nazi Germany in 1938. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, for his part, felt that “these fictitious referendums” were “unacceptable”. “Russia hastily organizes sham referendums”denounced the national security adviser of the White House.

The separatist powers of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions announced these votes, as did the Russian occupation authorities of Kherson and Zaporijjia (south). These elections, scheduled for this week, will take place as Ukraine enters its 8th month of war and all these areas are the subject of fighting. The leaders of the“politico-military administration” of occupation of Kherson and Zaporizhia regions further indicated that “volunteer units” would soon be formed to fight the Ukrainian forces.

These “referendums”, on the model of that which formalized the annexation of the Crimean peninsula (south) by Russia in 2014, denounced by kyiv and the West, have been the subject of preparations for several months. The timetable seems to have accelerated with the Ukrainian counter-offensive which forced the Russian army to retreat to the northeast of the country.

► Putin defends Russia’s “sovereign trajectory”

On Tuesday in Moscow receiving the credentials of recently arrived foreign ambassadors, the Russian head of state delivered a speech denouncing a so-called American hegemony in the world. “The development towards multipolarity unfortunately encounters resistance from those who strive to maintain a hegemonic role in world affairs and to control everything: Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa”Vladimir Putin said in a veiled allusion to Washington.

“It has to be said: those who are in a position of hegemony have been doing quite well for quite some time, but it cannot go on like this forever. It’s impossible “he added.

“We, Russia, will not deviate from our sovereign trajectory. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, we intend to further promote a unifying international agenda (…) and contribute to the resolution of serious regional crises”added the Russian President. “It is from these principles that Russia will speak at the opening of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly” represented by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, said Vladimir Putin.

► Moscow informs France of the “unacceptable” nature of arms deliveries to Ukraine

Russian diplomacy told France on Tuesday of the character “unacceptable” in his eyes Western arms deliveries to Ukraine, supplies that facilitated a Ukrainian counter-offensive. “Emphasis has been placed on the unacceptability of the continued force-feeding of Ukraine with Western weapons, including French ones, which the kyiv regime uses to bomb civilian installations and infrastructure”said the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a press release, after a deputy minister, Alexandre Grouchko, received the French ambassador, Pierre Levy.

► Russia and Ukraine ready to “exchange 200 prisoners”, says Erdogan

Russia and Ukraine at war have agreed to carry out “the exchange of 200 prisoners”said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday evening, September 19, on American television PBS. “Two hundred prisoners will soon be exchanged following an agreement between the parties”, said the Turkish head of state, considering that this is a step forward “meaningful” in this conflict. He did not give any other details on this agreement, nor on the people concerned, civilians or soldiers, during this interview.

For Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who met Russian President Vladimir Putin last week in Samarkand (Uzbekistan), the head of the Kremlin “wants to end it as soon as possible” with this war. The Turkish president, who has managed to maintain his ties with Moscow and kyiv since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24, has regularly offered his mediation in this conflict and repeats that“We have to find an agreement that satisfies everyone”.

War in Ukraine, day 209: Macron denounces a “return to the age of imperialism” at the UN tribune