France may send military instructors to Ukraine

French President Emmanuel Macron says he wants to "finalize" the creation of a coalition of countries that would send military instructors to train forces in Ukraine. He hosted a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Paris on Friday and said answering Ukraine's request for such instructors does not amount to an "escalation" of the conflict with Russia.

Macron has faced warnings from some allies about the plan. US and German leaders are concerned that having Western military personnel inside Ukraine could escalate the conflict.

Russian leaders say if the instructors are sent, they would become "legitimate targets."

Macron and Zelenskyy held a news conference after their talks, and Macron told reporters it is more "effective and practical" to train soldiers on Ukrainian soil. Zelenskyy agreed, saying that many NATO countries have already taught Ukrainian forces in their territories, but the "difference" would be that training in Ukraine would allow the period to be "shorter."

Macron has also promised to provide Mirage 2000 fighter jets, although he has not said how many. Zelenskyy welcomed the contribution, saying it will show that "Europe is stronger" than the "evil" that dares to threaten them.

Zelenskyy also met with executives of the French military industry, who agreed to create a subsidiary of their group in Ukraine. The companies make howitzers and other munitions that are already being used in the war.