Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron held a telephonic conversation on Wednesday, discussing the situation in Lebanon, Ukraine and Belarus, the Kremlin said in a statement.
“Putin and Macron discussed in detail the situation in the Republic of Lebanon, focusing on the steps taken by Russia and France to provide humanitarian assistance to the people in Lebanon after the explosion in the port of Beirut on August 4”, according to the statement.
“During the exchange of views on internal political developments in Lebanon, the Russian side reaffirmed its position in support of the republic’s national unity and sovereignty”, the statement further added.
The need to resolve any controversy via a process consisting of and led by the Lebanese, based on constructive dialogue and without external interference, was also underscored, it added.
The presidents also considered various aspects of the situation in Ukraine. They praised the additional ceasefire measures that were approved at the Minsk contact group meeting on July 22.
Macron shared the impressions of his recent visit to Lebanon, as well as the results of a videoconference organised by France on August 9 to rally international aid for that country.
Earlier this month, two enormous explosions devastated Beirut’s port that left more than 171 people dead and over 6,000 injured across wide parts of the country’s biggest city, shaking distant buildings and spreading panic and chaos across the Lebanese capital.
Meanwhile, Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab said that 2,750 tonnes of the agricultural fertiliser ammonium nitrate that had been stored for years in a portside warehouse had blown up, sparking “a disaster in every sense of the word”.
The blasts were so massive they shook the entire city and could be heard throughout the small country, and as far away as Nicosia on the eastern Mediterranean island of Cyprus, 240 kilometres (150 miles) away.