Nato Leaders' Summit 2019: Treaty organisation faces deep divisions at 70

Press quote (The National)
02 December 2019

Former British ambassador Ian Bond told The National Mr Macron had caused problems within the alliance between Turkey and the US and provoked an “explosion” from Mr Erdogan. He said the French leader was also making increasingly worrying overtures to Russia. In reimagining a new foreign policy for Europe, Mr Macron has caused friction with Berlin and Washington, not least because of his calls for European “strategic autonomy” in defence and foreign policy.

But it is as the French president looks to rebuild relations with Moscow that Mr Bond has warned he may be making his greatest misstep.

“I think he is falling into a trap that a number of western statesmen have fallen into in the last 20 years of assuming that Putin can be persuaded to see the world in the same way we do if you just get the message right,” said Mr Bond, director of foreign policy at the Centre for European Reform.

“He hasn't thought as much as he might about how European security looks if you are in the Kremlin.”