In a show of support to Ukraine following its invasion by Russia, the leaders of France, Germany and Italy met President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday. This is the first time French President Emmanuel Macron, Germany's Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Italian premier Mario Draghi visited Kyiv after the conflict began this February.
However, this visit by the European leaders has been deemed as an empty gesture by Russian President Vladimir Putin's aide Dmitry A. Medvedev. In a scathing note, Medvedev, the current vice-chairman of Vladimir Putin's Security Council, referred to the French, German and Italian leaders as "European fans of frogs, liverwurst and and spaghetti."
Attacking the leaders in the strongly-worded tweet, Mr Medvedev said, "European fans of frogs, liverwurst and spaghetti love visiting Kyiv. With zero use. Promised EU membership and old howitzers to Ukraine, lushed up on gorilka and went home by train, like 100 years ago. All is well. Yet, it won't bring Ukraine closer to peace. The clock's ticking."
European fans of frogs, liverwurst and spaghetti love visiting Kiev. With zero use. Promised EU membership and old howitzers to Ukraine, lushed up on gorilka and went home by train, like 100 years ago. All is well. Yet, it won't bring Ukraine closer to peace. The clock's ticking— Dmitry Medvedev (@MedvedevRussiaE) June 16, 2022
Previously, Medvedev had accused the US of stoking "disgusting" Russophobia across the world. "It will not work - Russia has the might to put all of our brash enemies in their place," he had said.
The European leaders' Kyiv visit comes at a time when Ukraine has sought more weapons, even as Russia takes more control over Donbas in southeastern Europe. Later this month, member countries of the European Union are also set to take a decision on Ukraine's EU candidacy in light of the prolonged conflict and the country's continued request to join the economic and political union.
In a show of support to Ukraine, the West has been extending military aid to Kyiv. In addition to this, several countries have also issued sanctions on Putin's government and revisited their dependency on Russian energy.