MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. The European Union, although not a warring party in Ukraine, is taking part in the conflict by providing assistance to Kiev, former French President Francois Hollande said in a conversation with Russian pranksters on Thursday.
Vladimir Kuznetsov ("Vovan") and Alexey Stolyarov ("Lexus") played a telephone prank on Hollande, calling him while posing as ex-Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko, and brought up the topic of the Ukrainian conflict.
"They (the EU on the whole and France in particular - TASS) do not want to be a warring party. <…> But, while not being a warring party, they are participants," Hollande said. "This is why the demands that Ukraine is making on the European Union (for help - TASS) should be sufficiently strong, serious and targeted," he added.
"Therefore, as long as Ukraine wants to continue fighting, and as long as Ukraine is in a position to force the Russians to retreat, there can be no negotiations," the former French leader maintained.
According to Hollande, after concluding the Minsk accords, which were signed during his presidency, the parties "got stuck" due to "a lack of due pressure" on Russia.
The ex-president of France reiterated that the sole objective of the Minsk agreements was to [buy time to] strengthen Ukraine’s combat capabilities. "And this is why we should speak in support of the Minsk negotiations, as it was precisely during that seven-year period that Ukraine obtained the means to fortify itself," he concluded.