French embassy returns to Kyiv

The French embassy was re-established in Kyiv this weekend after security conditions were deemed “acceptable” in the Ukrainian capital.

The French embassy returned to Kyiv on Friday (15 April), while it continues to advise French nationals against travelling to Ukraine formally. Before the re-establishment, the embassy was moved to Lviv, where it had been functioning since 28 February.

The return is because “the city is no longer directly threatened by an encirclement and that Russian troops have crossed the border in the other direction”, French ambassador Etienne de Poncins told France Info in an interview.

The embassy’s staff numbers have been reduced and include the ambassador, a dozen officers, volunteers, and armed forces who ensure their protection.

De Poncins told France Info that beyond the symbolic importance of such a return, it is necessary to respond to “very specific requests” from the Ukrainian authorities. The main issue at stake in the coming days and weeks is delivering military equipment to Ukraine.

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