Russian Defense Minister Warns French Counterpart Against Sending Troops to Ukraine

The French defense minister also expressed condolences for the Crocus City Hall terrorist attack

On Wednesday, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu held talks with his French counterpart, Sebastien Lecornu, and warned against France sending troops to Ukraine.

Since February, French President Emmanuel Macron has been openly discussing the idea of the West sending troops to Ukraine despite the risk of a direct Russia-NATO war quickly turning nuclear. Russian intelligence officials have claimed to have evidence that France was considering sending 2,000 troops as an initial deployment.

According to a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry, Shoigu told Lecornu that sending a contingent of troops to Ukraine would “create problems for France itself.”

Macron’s talk of sending troops to Ukraine has highlighted the fact that there is a small number of NATO special operations forces in Ukraine. The Discord leaks revealed last year that 97 NATO special operators were in Ukraine, including 15 French soldiers.

But what Macron appears to be discussing is a larger, public deployment, something Moscow has warned would make a direct Russia-NATO war inevitable.

Shoigu and Lecornu also discussed the March 22 terrorist attack on Crocus City Hall, a concert venue outside of Moscow, that killed at least 144 people. “During the conversation, Lecornu strongly condemned the terrorist attack that took place in the Moscow Region on March 22 and also expressed solidarity with the families of the victim,” the French Defense Ministry said.

Lecornu also “stated France’s readiness to cooperate in the fight against terrorism and called for expanding bilateral exchanges to maximize the effectiveness of countering this threat.”

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.