Russia ‘cannot be allowed to win’, vows Macron following show of unity at G7 summit | World | News

The statement comes after Western allies of Ukraine and members of the G7 presented a united force in support of Ukraine as nations adopt a stronger approach towards the Kremlin. Following Russia’s missile attack on the Kremenchuk shopping centre, allies denounced “Russia’s illegal and unjustifiable war of aggression against Ukraine”.

Fire crews are continuing to search the rubble of the shopping mall for survivors with authorities announcing that 36 people are missing and at least 18 dead.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called the strike “one of the most brazen terrorist attacks in European history”.

Germany and its Chancellor Olaf Scholz have previously been criticised for having a relatively weak stance on Russia over fears about energy and wanting a quick conclusion to the war.

However, the nation is now toughening its approach and Mr Scholz said at the summit that Russian sanctions would be lifted upon acceptance from the Kremlin that it has failed in its invasion.

Mr Scholz said: “All the sanctions we imposed over Crimea are still there.

“All the sanctions we imposed because of the Russian-incited uprising in Donbas are still there.

“And the same will go for the decisions taken now, which are much more severe.”

He added: “There is only one way out: for Putin to accept that his plans in Ukraine will not succeed.”

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At a press conference following the summit in Bavaria, French President Macron said: “I really hope that the end [of the conflict] can be achieved by the end of the year, with a certainty and a desire, which is that Russia cannot and must not win.”

He added: “Our support for Ukraine and our sanctions against Russia will continue as long as is necessary and with necessary intensity in the coming days.”

His comments demonstrate a change of heart from his previous warnings to leaders that they should not “humiliate” Putin which had raised fears that he would lead Ukraine to signing a bad peace deal.

Former Foreign Secretary William Hague has said that Western allies of Ukraine have no choice but to continue supporting Ukraine in its fight with Russia.

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Writing in The Times he said: “Realistically, any peace deal that rewards Putin with new territory for the invasion of a neighbour invites further aggression in the future.

“This is why a peace argument based on concessions by Ukraine is not desirable. Yet on these points alone the ‘peace’ argument around Europe will still gain strength as inflation and recession take hold.”

He concluded: “Even if it were desirable, it is not available…When faced with Putin, if we favour peace at the expense of justice, we will end up with neither.”

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