Despite the warning, Paris hasn?t told its nationals to leave Ukraine
French citizens in Ukraine should ensure they have enough crucial supplies to wait out a potential conflict, Paris’ ambassador in Kiev has advised amid fears in the West that Moscow could soon launch a strike against its neighbor.
In a statement on Sunday, Etienne de Poncins revealed what measures Paris recommends its compatriots take to brace themselves for potentially difficult days ahead.
"The past days have not led to the expected de-escalation which our authorities are working tirelessly on," he said. "That’s why we decided to update our travel advice. Now we advise French travelers to postpone ‘all trips to Ukraine’ (not just ‘non-essential trips’)."
"We recommend that you prepare a few supplies of water, food and warm clothes for all intents and purposes, as well as make sure that your vehicle’s tank is full, or even that you have some additional reserves," the notice reads.
De Poncins also called on French citizens to be vigilant and ensure that they have all of their personal documents in order.
However, the ambassador said that Paris does not recommend compatriots living in Ukraine to leave the country at the moment and that its embassy remains open.
Western officials have been warning for months that Russia is amassing its troops at the shared frontier as a precursor to a full-scale invasion. Also on Sunday, the White House’s national security advisor, Jake Sullivan, said that "major military action" could "begin any day now."
The Kremlin has repeatedly insisted that it has no aggressive intentions, arguing that the movement of its armed forces within its own territory is an internal matter and of no concern to anyone else.