Russian President Vladimir Putin’s state of mind remains “determined”, according to an Elysee Palace source speaking after a Saturday afternoon phone call between French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Putin.
The source said that since the three leaders’ last conversation on Thursday, Putin still seemed “committed to achieving his goals in Ukraine”, but that the fact that he continues to talk to French and German leaders suggests that “he does not rule out not the possibility of a diplomatic solution altogether.
A source close to Macron and familiar with the conversation told CNN’s Jim Acosta that Macron was disappointed with Putin’s “lack of sincerity” during the call, but that the French president remains committed to diplomatic solutions to end the conflict, including coordinated sanctions, prohibiting any activity by Russia. within the international community, and a “firm and nurturing ongoing dialogue”.
Earlier Saturday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky asked Macron to pressure Putin for a ceasefire and raise the issue of the detention of the mayor of Melitopol. The source said Macron and Scholz did.
“We have pleaded for an immediate ceasefire,” the source said, “and for the start of negotiations on three points: issues relating to security, those relating to Ukrainian sovereignty and thirdly, issues raised by both Ukraine and Russia recently”.
Further sanctions are planned by both the G7 and the European Union, the source said. The new European sanctions will be discussed next week in Brussels and will aim to sanction the recent actions of Russian troops in Ukraine, the siege of Mariupol and the advance of Russian troops along the Dnieper.
Asked about the possibility of EU sanctions on Russian energy exports, the source reiterated what Macron said at the leaders’ summit in Versailles on Friday that nothing was “taboo” with no options on the table.
CNN’s Jim Acosta contributed to this report.