Paris may offer Kiev its backing on accession after the conflict with Moscow is over, Le Monde reports FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron (L) meets Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky (R) © Kay Nietfeld / picture alliance via Getty Images

The French government may attempt to lure Kiev to the negotiating table with Russia by offering support for Ukraine’s accession to NATO after the conflict is over, French media reports.

According to Le Monde, this approach was discussed at the Elysee Palace on Monday last week by the French Defense Council. The hope is that if Ukraine joins the US-led military bloc, this would deter further hostilities, according to the report on Tuesday. A military source told the newspaper that the French position is “closer to that of Poland than that of Germany.”

Russia considers NATO a hostile organization and has called attempts to include Ukraine in the bloc a ‘red line’ for national security. Moscow launched its military operation in the neighboring country last year after NATO members refused to discuss its security concerns. The organization was quietly absorbing Ukraine without formally including it, Russian officials claimed.

The deliberations in Paris come ahead of a summit of NATO leaders which will take place in Lithuania next month. Last week, US President Joe Biden poured cold water on hopes that Ukraine’s candidacy would be fast-tracked. He stated that the country would have to meet the same standards as everyone else and that “we are not going to make it easy.”

The Biden administration is reportedly siding with the cautious German position rather than with Poland and other countries which want to see a swift roadmap for Ukraine to join NATO. According to the New York Times, Kiev may instead receive an upgrade of relations with the bloc to the council level – the same that Russia once had – and a pledge of continued arms supplies.

Kiev demands the full withdrawal of Russian troops from territory that Ukraine claims before any peace talks. A ‘peace plan’ promoted by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky demands this, as well as reparations and other concessions. Moscow has rejected the proposal, calling it detached from reality. (RT)