Biden, allies discuss new security guarantees for Ukraine: France

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The US, France and other allies discussed how to provide security guarantees to Ukraine during and after the war with Russia, a French presidency official said on Tuesday as Moscow launched an all-out assault on eastern Ukraine.

US President Joe Biden consulted with allies including French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday on the latest developments in Ukraine, the White House said earlier.

The purpose of the call was “to discuss our continued support for Ukraine and efforts to hold Russia accountable as part of our close coordination,” the White House said.

A French presidential adviser said allies had discussed how to provide security guarantees to Ukraine after the war if it's not part of NATO and its automatic defense mechanism known as article 5.

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“Our country is ready to provide security guarantees,” the French official said. “It would be military supplies so that it can deal with a new attack or, possibly, guarantees that would see us get involved if Ukraine is attacked in a way where we could assess how to assist it.”

These guarantees would look more like the defense clause the European Union currently has among its members, the French official said, rather than a defense mechanism similar to NATO's article 5, which triggers automatic military support if a member is attacked.

Allies also discussed the need to convince non-EU, non-G7 countries to treat the war in Ukraine as an issue that concerns world peace and not just Europe or the West, the French official said.

Russia seized a town in eastern Ukraine as part of a fresh all-out assault that Ukraine has described as the Battle of the Donbas aimed at taking two provinces.

The US sees Russia carrying out a “prelude” to larger, expected offensive operations in the eastern part of its neighboring country, a senior US official on Tuesday.

Among those on Biden's call were Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, as well as the leaders of Poland, Japan and Italy.

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