Putin to Meet Merkel During Normandy Visit, Obama Meeting not Planned – Moscow

MOSCOW, June 3 (RIA Novosti) – Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet on the sidelines of the WWII D-Day ceremonies in Normandy, France, on June 6, the Kremlin said in a statement Tuesday.

“In the run-up to the bilateral meeting in Normandy [due] June 6, the leaders exchanged opinions about the situation in Ukraine. The Russian president and the German chancellor spoke in favor of preparing coordinated measures to de-escalate the crisis,” the statement said.

The sides also discussed the issue of Russian gas supplies to Ukraine and Europe and the Russia-EU-Ukraine talks on the problem.

No meeting of the Russian leader with US President Barack Obama is planned, according to presidential aide Yuri Ushakov.

Earlier it was reported that Putin would attend the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings in France. This will be first visit of the Russian president to Western Europe since the outbreak of the Ukrainian crisis. France invited Putin to take part in the event several months ago and confirmed the invitation despite the disagreements on Ukraine.

In 1944, the Normandy landings opened the Western Front in the World War II, which left the Nazis caught between the allied US, British and European troops and the Soviet Army advancing from the East.

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