Skip to comments.Sarkozy to meet Putin as French right looks to Russia
Posted on 10/29/2015 7:52:39 AM PDT by Trumpinator
Sarkozy to meet Putin as French right looks to Russia
Text by Sam BALL
Latest update : 2015-10-29
Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy flew to Moscow Wednesday where he is set to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the latest sign the French right is seeking closer ties with the Kremlin in defiance of FranÃ§ois Hollandeâs government.
Sarkozy is due to meet with Putin on Thursday accompanied by a cohort of senior members of his Les RÃ©publicains party â Franceâs centre-right main opposition party that was until recently known as the UMP.
The two men are set to hold an âexchange of views â¦ on bilateral relationsâ, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, quoted by Russian state media. Top of the bill âis likely to be Syriaâ, he added.
The visit comes at a time of tense relations between Russia and the West, not least France, over Moscowâs military intervention in Syria where it has been accused of targeting moderate rebel forces, along with Islamic Stage group militants, in support of Putinâs ally Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Sarkozy: Hollandeâs Russia policy ârisks new cold warâ
Hollandeâs government has been one of the strongest Western opponents of involving Assad in any solution to the Syria conflict â a position that has put Paris at loggerheads with the Kremlin.
Russia was conspicuously absent from a meeting on Syria hosted by Paris on Tuesday, that included representatives from Germany, the UK, Saudi Arabia and the US.
Russiaâs annexation of Crimea and support of separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine has also been a thorn in the side of relations between Paris and Moscow â one that led Hollande to scrap the sale to Russia of two French-built warships last year, a deal that was signed off by Sarkozy during his 2007â2012 presidency.
Sarkozy, along with others on the right of French politics, have become increasingly critical of Hollandeâs hardline stance with Russia and have repeatedly called for a more conciliatory approach.
Sarkozyâs Russian trip, according to one party member, is designed to deliver a âparticular messageâ to Putin.
That message is that âEurope must maintain a dialogue with Russia and that France, within Europe, has an important role to play, one it has not been playing for a long timeâ, Les RÃ©publicains MP Thierry Mariani told France Info radio.
Sarkozy himself recently accused Hollande of âa serious error of creating conditions for a new cold war with Russiaâ, a line that has also been used by far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen in criticising the French governmentâs dealings with Moscow.
French rightâs âfascination with Putinâ
Others within Les RÃ©publicains have called for France to cooperate with Russia over Syria, including working with Assad.
Russia has been âmaligned so stupidly these last few yearsâ, wrote Les RÃ©publicains former prime minister FranÃ§ois Fillon in a recent blog post. âThe time has come for France to revise its diplomatic strategy [in Syria].â
At the same time, a recent Ifop poll for French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche found that Putin is considerably more popular with right-wing voters. While the survey found negative opinions of the Russian leader were still the norm among the majority, 24 percent of Les RÃ©publicains supporters and 37 percent of National Front supporters said they had a âgood opinionâ of Putin, compared to 19 percent among supporters of Hollandeâs Socialist Party (PS).
âThere is a sort of fascination among the French right with Putinâs authoritarian regime, which explains [Sarkozyâs] visit,â Bruno Le Roux, leader of the PS in parliament, told France Info Wednesday.
However, he admitted there could be a certain âusefulnessâ to the former presidentâs meeting with Putin.
âEveryone has the right to talk,â he later told the AFP news agency. âThere is a usefulness in maintaining relationships with all countries.â
"At the same time, in these sorts of moments, the position of France, the position which is that of Europe, must be kept in mind.
âIâll of course be very interested to know what was said.â
Somebody should remind French leadership how it works when French peasants get fed up with the elite ruling class. They don’t just sit around and eat cake.
The irony is the French elite these days are socialists.
Even more ironic is that the far-Right in France is subsidized by Russia. But that’s how the world works.
At least they take the time and effort to protest, en masse.
Isn't it? Doesn't matter what the label is. Give leadership unrestricted power and they use it against the people. Have the elite, ever in history, given up power voluntarily or even by being voted out of power? (I really don't know the answer. It's not a rhetorical question)
Sarkozy is subsidized by Russia?
Orwell’s pigs in Animal Farm come to mind.
Putin would cut the check in a heartbeat.
You write that expose when you get the facts. I am sure Le Monde would publish it.
*your source, not mine
The Guardian, a leftist socialist newspaper - ironic.
I did not say it was wrong. The Guardian is pro EU and pro leftist. That means that Russia is not pro EU nor pro leftist in their eyes. The Polish Guardian article laments to loss of the pro EU center-left party. So your point fails. And it also kind of makes me think you are not able to understand EU politics much either. I am no expert but I have some experience - and I am not a Russian nor have any Slavic ancestry just in case your ethnic hatred/bias demands an answer to that one.
Ok, so explain the “irony,” genius. Next, explain why the political losses of a pro-EU center-left party indicate a loss of support for the EU. You’re the Euro-expert. /s
The Far right and the Communists both look to Russia for different reasons.
Sarkozy is not the far right.....
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