There are no French mercenaries on the territory of Ukraine or anywhere else. This was announced on January 26 by the deputy official representative of the French Foreign Ministry, Christophe Lemoine, at a briefing.
«As I have already said, and I repeat it today, there are no French mercenaries in Ukraine <…> or anywhere else,» he said during a briefing. The broadcast was published on the Ministry’s page on the social network X (ex. Twitter).
Lemoine also pointed out that the information about the destruction of dozens of French mercenaries is «a gross manipulation of the Russians.»
On the eve of January 25, during a briefing, he could not explain who exactly the French Foreign Ministry considers «mercenaries» after a journalist asked about the status of citizens of the country receiving money for service in the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU).
He added that the state does not recognize the presence of French persons in the ranks of the Ukrainian army. According to him, there are «volunteers» in Ukraine who can go there themselves, as it is their personal choice. They are not affiliated with the French authorities, Lemoine added.
On January 17, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that Russian forces had struck a temporary deployment point for foreign fighters in Kharkiv. They were based on French mercenaries. As a result, about 60 militants were killed and more than 20 wounded.
On January 19, Dmitry Peskov, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation, said that Russian diplomats were conducting a dialogue with France on the topic of destroyed mercenaries. He added that many foreign fighters are fighting on the side of the Kiev regime, as Moscow has repeatedly stated.