German-French Proposal Resumes Talks with Putin, EU Leaders Reject
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on the 25th that European Union leaders have rejected a proposal by Germany and France to promote the resumption of talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
EU leaders held a summit in Brussels. After the meeting, Merkel said: “It is no longer possible to agree to an immediate high-level meeting today.”
She said that EU leaders had previously agreed to maintain and develop a certain “form of dialogue” with Russia. She also said: “I would have liked to see a bolder step, but this is also good, we will continue to work hard.”
Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said after the meeting that the common idea of many leaders is not to change their position on Russia. He also said earlier that the idea of resuming talks with Puting is no different from looking for a tiger’s skin.
US President Biden only met Putin in Geneva last week. Germany and France made an interim proposal this week, hoping that the EU will resume talks with Putin, which caught other EU leaders off guard.
Many EU member states oppose this proposal, especially Eastern European countries. Until Russia changes course, these countries are still reluctant to resume talks with Russia.
The Russian authorities stated that Putin “supports” the proposal. Since Russia took over Crimea in March 2014, the EU has frozen exchanges with Russia. If the German-French proposal were passed, it could have resumed exchanges between the two sides.
The last time EU leaders held a summit with Putin was in early 2014, but Putin has always preferred to conduct bilateral exchanges with individual countries.
Russia has been at odds with some Western countries recently. On the one hand, it is because Russia assembled its troops on the Ukrainian border earlier this year. On the other hand, because of a series of espionage scandals, Russia and several European countries expel diplomats from each other.