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Macron: Russia's return to G8 format must depend on solving Ukraine crisis

FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron reacts as he arrives at a ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of the Allied landings in Provence in World War Two which helped liberate southern France, in Boulouris, France, August 15, 2019. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday said re-admitting Russia into the Group of Seven nations without resolving the Ukraine crisis would be an error and underscore the weakness of Western powers.

“I think to say that without any conditions Russia can return to the table would be signing off the weakness of the G7” Macron told the French presidential press ahead of a summit in France this weekend.

“It would be a strategic error for us and the consecration of this age of impunity.”

He said the Ukraine crisis had to be resolved before Russia could return to the fold even if it remained vital to continue discussing international crises with Moscow.

Reporting by Michel Rose; writing by John Irish; Editing by Richard Lough