Why is Macron opposing interests of EU, supporting Russian separatism?

The Kremlin has influential allies supporting separatism in the “post-Soviet” countries, whose policy goes against the position of the EU.

Among them is the president of France Emmanuel Macron, who publicly backed Russian separatism in the South Caucasus, that is, in Karabakh, occupied by a Kremlin-loyal faction. Moreover, Macron admits that his position on the South Caucasus is not supported by a single EU state.

A peculiar position

On June 27, Emmanuel Macron announced at the meeting with the representatives of the Armenian community that he exerts more pressure on the president of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev than the Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan: “I am the only one who has a clear position and a message on Artsakh.” (that is what pro-Russian Armenian separatists call their enclave in Azerbaijan’s Karabakh).

Pointing out his “determination regarding Artsakh”, Macron highlighted that he would “continue to put in efforts”. It is in this context that he emphasized that “It was the first time that France has sent the French military attache into its embassy in Armenia”. The president added meaningfully: “We are going to do everything possible!”

Macron’s Marseille announcement speaks volumes about his support of Russian separatism in Karabakh.

The French president also admitted that the rest of Europe doesn’t share his position: “I am going to continue putting in effort even if I’m the only one in the international family with this agenda”.

In this regard, Macron’s policy in the South Caucasus is completely opposed to the foreign policy of the EU aimed at establishing peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

The triple alliance of France, Iran and Russia

If the position of France is neither beneficial to the West nor to Ukraine, who takes advantage from such Macron’s policy? The primary beneficiaries are Russia and Iran.

It is stated in the analytical report for Newsweek that looking to secure itself with a lever of pressure on Baku, Moscow is going to engage Armenian separatists in Karabakh, which even the Prime Minister of Armenia has recognized as a sovereign territory of Azerbaijan.

Moscow and Tehran are regarding a separatist enclave in Karabakh as a “kill-switch” for supplies of Azerbaijani energy resources into the EU, explains Begin-Sadat Center, one of the leading Israeli think tanks.

Moreover, analyzing multiple public announcements and analytical assessments in the leading media sources, you can draw a conclusion that “a union of France, Iran and Russia, which joined forces against Azerbaijan and Israel in the Caucasus” has formed.

In May, The Wall Street Journal wrote that the policy of president Macron in the South Caucasus serves the regional interests of Moscow and Tehran as well as goes against the efforts of Washington and Brussels to achieve a peaceful settlement between Yerevan and Baku.

“Paris has taken a position that actually intensifies Russia and Iran’s game in the South Caucasus,” an article in the WSJ says.

Ukraine, whose residents have been suffering from the military aggression of Russia and its allies like Iran, is also concerned about Macron’s promotion of separatism. “Owing to its partnership with Azerbaijan, the EU manages to do without Russian energy resources,” one of the largest Ukrainian publications, Цензор emphasized in May.

The Armenian factor in France

President Macron turned out to be hostage to radical elements in the Armenian diaspora, even though they have a tiny electoral weight. The number of all French citizens with the right to vote accounts for around 600 thousand. It is only 1% of the overall number of voters.

Nevertheless, the president of one of the leading European nations is under the thumb of Armenian radicals. “Azerbaijan is not an aggressor in this conflict, but it fell prey to the “architects” of the project “The Great Armenia”, whose realization took place with Moscow’s assistance. Now, based on the results of the Second Nagorno-Karabakh war, Azerbaijan is reclaiming its sovereign territories. This causes a rabid reaction of the multimillion Armenian diaspora and certain French politicians who came under their influence,” according to an analytical report published by the Ukrainian TV channel Pyatiy.

Counteraction to the negotiation process

According to Armenian media, immediately after the European summit in Chisinau on June 1, Macron called the co-chairman of the Coordinating Council of Armenian Organizations of France Murad Papazyan with a complaint about EU officials and said something like this: “I am the only one interested in the future of Artsakh, and other participants in the negotiation process (including German Chancellor Scholz and head of the European Council Charles Michel) consider Artsakh an integral part of Azerbaijan.”

Against this background, the central European and American media unanimously note the destructive role of Macron in the South Caucasus.

The London edition of EuToday clarifies that “For France, like for Russia, it is unprofitable to resolve the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. This serves as a pretext for them to maintain and increase their influence in the South Caucasus.”

It can be concluded that the leaders of France and Russia are encouraging the escalation of the conflict in the Caucasus, masking their actions with mediatory rhetoric.

Against the victory of Ukraine?

The situation around the South Caucasus is actively covered by the Ukrainian media.

Judging by the analytical calculations, the Kremlin dictates the foreign policy to France. Perhaps that’s why the influential forces in France are not interested in the victory of Ukraine and are shifting the focus from Putin’s dictatorship to Azerbaijan, which supplies fuel to Ukraine for free.

“By supporting Armenia, French politicians are trying to switch the political focus of the world from the war in Ukraine to the South Caucasus,” RBC Ukraine reports.

The Ukrainian Telegraf explains that “Macron’s policy in the South Caucasus is in Putin’s interests, and both of them impede Washington’s efforts to achieve peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan.”

There is another probable reason for Macron’s mentioned policy: France is frankly not interested in the victory of Ukraine, therefore it regularly communicates with the Kremlin in the “deep curtsy” mode. The energy and economic dependence of the French on Russia makes them play along with the aggression against Ukraine, while “poisoning” Azerbaijan in order to please Putin…

(Photo: European Parliament)

Igor Chalenko

Igor Chalenko is an Ukrainian political scientist who heads the Centre for Analysis and Strategies, Ukraine.