Vladimir Putin

How France's far-right RN party sought to hide its links to Russia during probe by MPs

Politique — Analysis

This week the publication of a Parliamentary inquiry into foreign interference in France will reveal the close ties between Marine Le Pen's far-right Rassemblement National (RN) and the Russian regime of Vladimir Putin. The party, formerly known as the Front National, was itself responsible for this investigation and chaired the inquiry; on the surface this looks like an attempt at transparency. In reality, it was simply a ploy to try to clear its name, though the party is still furious over the contents of the final report, parts of which have been leaked. Mediapart spent many hours following the hearings conducted by the committee. Here Matthieu Suc and Marine Turchi report on a process that became a charade.

The Russian mathematician relentlessly persecuted by Putin's henchmen


Russian mathematician Azat Miftakhov, serving a six-year sentence in a penal colony for supposed vandalism, is in principle eligible for release in September. But Russia’s security services, the FSB, are preparing a new case against him, using the false testimony of individuals under torture, this time for supposed terrorist activities. In this report by Antoine Perraud, two Russian anarchists exiled in France recount their ordeals at the hands of the Kremlin regime.

Macron mulls stripping top French honour from Putin

International — Link

Situation complicated by fact that Ukraine’s wartime leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy has now been bestowed with France’s légion d'honneur.

Hit French novel sympathetic to Putin worries critics

France — Link

Giuliano da Empoli's novel The Wizard of the Kremlin has become a bestseller in France since its publication shortly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but some critics are concerned that its broadly sympathic portrayal of Vladimir Putin may influence French policy towards the ongoing war.

Nicolas Sarkozy, his praise for Putin, and a trail of Kremlin money

International — Investigation

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy received 300,000 euros during a period in which he attended a 2018 gathering in Moscow that was organised by the Russian state's main sovereign wealth fund, and at which he praised his “friend” Vladimir Putin. The money was paid by a company which bears the same name as a subsidiary of that sovereign fund. Fabrice Arfi and Yann Philippin report.

France's Macron assails Putin's 'brutal attack' on Ukraine

International — Link

French president accused the Russian leader of launching a “brutal attack” on Ukraine in an imperialist, revanchist violation of national borders.

Kremlin rebukes Macron over TV extracts of his talks with Putin

International — Link

Russia's forein minister Sergey Lavrov and Kremlin spokeswoman Maria Zakharova have strongly criticised French President Emmanuel Macron for allowing a documentary on France's public TV channel France 2 to broadcast extracts of his conversations on Ukraine with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. 

Exiled Russian oligarch Sergei Pugachev on Putin’s ‘junta’ and why Ukraine marks its downfall

International — Interview

Exiled Russian oligarch Sergei Pugachev, who became dubbed “the Kremlin’s banker”, was once part of Vladimir Putin’s inner circle, until he was eventually cast out by the Russian president and took refuge abroad. In this interview with Mediapart, he details how Putin and his close allies, what he calls “a junta which has captured power, all the money and all the institutions of the state”, function. He denounces a system of corruption on a vast scale, including that of foreign politicians, argues why the decision to wage war on Ukraine marks “the end of Putin’s Russia”, and describes French President Emmanuel Macron’s frequent calls to Putin as “ridiculous”.

Putin shows no will to end war in Ukraine, says Macron's office

International — Link

The French presidential office, the Élysée  Palace, has said that during a conference call on Saturday between Russian President Vladimir Putin, France's president Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Putin showed no willingness to end the war with Ukraine.

Putin tells Macron Russia will reach aims via 'negotiation or war'

International — Link

Macron found Putin "very determined to achieve his objectives", including on "what the Russian president calls the 'de-Nazification' and the 'neutralisation' of Ukraine", said Élysée official.

Putin wants all of Ukraine and 'worse is to come', warns Macron

International — Link

The leaders spoke for 90 minutes, with Mr Putin telling Mr Macron that the war in Ukraine was "going according to plan" - to which the French president responded Russian leader was "lying" to himself. 

Putin tells Macron that Russian forces will not target Ukrainian civilians

International — Link

In latest phone call between the two leaders, Kremlin says Russian leader demanded recognition of Crimea annexation, ‘denazification’ of Ukraine as prerequisites to end invasion.

How Ukraine war ended Macron's illusions over 'privileged' relations with Putin

International — Analysis

For a long time the French president placed great emphasis on his “privileged relationship” with his Russian counterpart to obtain diplomatic advances, sometimes without even consulting his European partners. But when Emmanuel Macron met Vladimir Putin in Moscow in early February to discuss the situation in Ukraine everything had changed ... starting with the Kremlin chief himself. Ellen Salvi reports.

How Macron and the West failed to deter Putin on Ukraine

International — Link

Russian leader’s intransigence meant French president's talks in Moscow were a high-risk strategy, say diplomats.

Élysée says Macron brokers possible Biden-Putin summit on Ukraine

International — Link

The French presidential office said late Sunday that Emmanuel Macron held two phone calls with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin during which the latter agreed  'in principle'  to a summit with US President Joe Biden over tensions in Ukraine.