France’s President, Emmanuel Macron, criticized President Joe Biden following his speech in Warsaw Saturday for what he deems to be overly harsh rhetoric against Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
In an interview with France’s Channel 3 (via Reuters), Macron called for Biden to hold his verbal fire.
“I wouldn’t use this type of wording because I continue to hold discussions with President Putin,” Macron said. He added, “We want to stop the war that Russia has launched in Ukraine without escalation — that’s the objective. If this is what we want to do, we should not escalate things — neither with words nor actions.”
After visiting with Ukrainian refugees in Poland on Saturday, reporters asked Biden what the experience of seeing those people made him think as he deals with Putin.
“He’s a butcher,” the president said.
In a speech later in the day, Biden said of Putin, “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.” The White House has since walked the president’s comments back.