If it were up to the Netherlands, there would be no EU-Russia summit. Yesterday, France and Germany announced their desire to hold a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. But Prime Minister Rutte does not think that should happen. “Not with me anyway,” he said as he arrived at the EU summit today.
Relations with Russia have been tense for a long time. That is why European heads of government are discussing Russia at length this evening. France and Germany would like to meet Putin again soon. German Chancellor Merkel hopes to be able to resume talks with Putin at a summit and thus improve relations.
For the Netherlands, the MH17 file is the main reason for not wanting to sit in one room with the Russian president at the moment. “I’m not going to test that,” Rutte emphasized again.
He is not opposed to the conversation with President of the European Commission von der Leyen and the President of the European Council of Heads of Government.
Also Poland and the Baltic states against
The Franco-German plan also leads to resistance from a number of other countries. The three Baltic states and Poland are strongly opposed to talks with Russia. A week ago, Poland was hit by a major cyber attack from Russia. Having a conversation with President Putin would also be a very soft approach to the Poles.
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