Bulgaria’s Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva has ordered the country’s ambassador in Paris, Angel Cholakov, to deliver a protest note to the French Foreign Ministry over reported comments by President Emmanuel Macron in an interview with far-right magazine Valeurs Actuelles.
France’s ambassador in Sofia, Florence Robine, has been called to the Foreign Ministry in the Bulgarian capital city on November 4 in connection with the reports.
Macron is reported to have said, in varying translations: “”I prefer the people who arrive from Guinea or Cote d’Ivoire legally…than the underground Bulgarian or Ukrainian networks” or “I prefer legal immigrants from Guinea or Cote d’Ivoire…instead of illegal Ukrainian or Bulgarian gangs”.
The fact of Macron having given an interview to the ultra-conservative weekly Valeurs Actuelles was controversial in itself, France 24 reported.
On November 2, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry summoned the French ambassador in Kyiv for an explanation of Macron’s comments.
A statement by the ministry after the talks said that the French President’s words had been taken out of context.
“There is a full understanding and co-operation between Kyiv and Paris in implementing the arrangements for the movement of citizens from both countries,” a spokesperson for the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry was quoted as saying.
(Photo of Macron: europarl.europa.eu)