Putin cancels Paris trip over Hollande Syria grandstand

Putin cancels Paris trip over Hollande Syria grandstand
Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers a speech during a session of the 23rd World Energy Congress in Istanbul, Turkey, October 10, 2016. Sputnik/Kremlin/Alexei Druzhinin via REUTERS

Russian President Vladimir Putin has canceled his official visit to Paris on October 19th after French President Francois Hollande said he would only see him for stern talks on Syria.

  • Francois Hollande: "I made it known to Mr Putin that if he came to Paris, I would not accompany him to any ceremonies, but that I was ready to continue the dialogue on Syria. He decided to postpone the visit.”
  • Putin was set to inaugurate a new Russian Orthodox cathedral and visit a Russian art exhibition in the Paris.
  • The Kremlin confirmed Putin's decision, made no mention of Syria, said he was ready to come to Paris at Hollande's convenience.
  • Hollande: ”With Russia, France has a major disagreement on Syria and the Russian veto of the French resolution at the U.N. Security Council has prevented the cessation of bombings and enablement of a truce.”
  • "I'm ready to meet President Putin if we can advance peace, end the bombings and announce a truce.”
  • Diplomats: Paris is leading discussions on whether to impose new European Union sanctions on Russia specifically over Syria.

(PARIS/STRASBOURG, FRANCE) Russian President Vladimir Putin has canceled a visit to Paris next week after President Francois Hollande said he would see him only for talks on Syria - the latest episode in deteriorating relations between Moscow and the West.

French officials have been grappling for ways to put new pressure on Russia after Moscow vetoed a French-drafted United Nations Security Council resolution on Syria. French officials' growing anger over a Russian-backed Syrian government onslaught against ISIS-held areas of the city of Aleppo had led them to reconsider whether to host Putin on Oct. 19.

"I made it known to Mr Putin that if he came to Paris, I would not accompany him to any ceremonies, but that I was ready to continue the dialogue on Syria. He decided to postpone the visit," Hollande said at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.

The Russian president had been scheduled to inaugurate a new Russian Orthodox cathedral and visit a Russian art exhibition in the French capital on Oct. 19.

The Kremlin confirmed Putin's decision, but made no mention of Syria and said he was ready to come to Paris at Hollande's convenience.

While Paris has said it is vital to keep dialogue going with Moscow and not sever relations, events in Syria have damaged their ties as the two countries support opposite sides in the conflict.

Describing Russian air strikes in Syria as "war crimes", Hollande said it was still necessary to talk with Moscow, but only if discussions were "firm, frank," otherwise it would be a "charade."

"With Russia, France has a major disagreement on Syria and the Russian veto of the French resolution at the U.N. Security Council has prevented the cessation of bombings and enablement of a truce," Hollande said at the Council of Europe.

"I'm ready to meet President Putin if we can advance peace, end the bombings and announce a truce," he said.

France's foreign minister said on Monday his diplomats were working to find a way for the International Criminal Court's prosecutor to launch an investigation into war crimes it says have been committed by Syrian and Russian forces in eastern Aleppo.

Diplomats have also said Paris is leading discussions on whether to impose new European Union sanctions on Russia specifically over Syria, where Moscow backs President Bashar al-Assad in a more than five-year-old western instigated insurgency.

This article was contributed by Reuters

Please contact TRUNEWS correspondent Edward Szall with any news tips related to this story.
Email: Edward.Szall@trunews.com | Twitter: @EdwardSzall | Facebook: Ed Szall 
DOWNLOAD THE TRUNEWS MOBILE APP on Apple and Google Play
  • Get it on Google Play

Donate Today!

Support TRUNEWS to help build a global news network that provides a credible source for world news


We believe Christians need and deserve their own global news network to keep the worldwide Church informed, and to offer Christians a positive alternative to the anti-Christian bigotry of the mainstream news media

You May Also Like