News / Europe

Putin Meets Obama, Poroshenko on D-Day Event Sidelines

Ukraine's President-elect Petro Poroshenko, left, walks past Russian President Vladimir Putin during the 70th anniversary commemoration of D-Day in Ouistreham, western France, June 6, 2014.
Ukraine's President-elect Petro Poroshenko, left, walks past Russian President Vladimir Putin during the 70th anniversary commemoration of D-Day in Ouistreham, western France, June 6, 2014.
VOA News
U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin held brief talks on the sidelines of D-Day anniversary celebrations in Normandy, France, on Friday.

A White House official confirmed the two met for about 15 minutes after a luncheon for world leaders at the Chateau de Benouville.

Obama made clear to Putin that de-escalating the crisis in Ukraine depends upon Moscow recognizing President-elect Petro Poroshenko - scheduled to take office Saturday - as the country's legitimate leader, ceasing support for pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, and stopping the provision of arms and materiel across the border, a White House representative said.

Obama urged Putin to immediately collaborate with the Kyiv government to reduce tensions, warning that failure to do so would deepen Russia's isolation, the representative said.

Earlier in the day, Putin and Poroshenko met informally with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. They talked informally as they walked into the chateau.

French officials were quoted as saying Putin and Poroshenko discussed a possible ceasefire between Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian separatists.

Russian news agencies quoted Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, as saying that during their conversation, both leaders called for "a speedy end to to the bloodshed in southeastern Ukraine and to the military actions of both sides - the Ukrainian armed forces and the supporters of the federalization of Ukraine."
 
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko, center, talk after a group photo, June 6, 2014.German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko, center, talk after a group photo, June 6, 2014.
x
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko, center, talk after a group photo, June 6, 2014.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko, center, talk after a group photo, June 6, 2014.
French President Francois Hollande had personally invited Putin to the D-Day commemoration, in recognition of at least 20 million Soviets killed during World War II. Reuters, on Twitter, reported Hollande's office as saying Putin and Poroshenko shook hands.

Western officials had expressed hope that informal contacts between Putin and Poroshenko during the one-day event can help ease tensions over Ukraine's future, after Russia seized and annexed the Crimea region following the ouster of a pro-Russian president in Kyiv in February.

A day earlier, he met British Prime Minister David Cameron and Hollande to discuss Moscow's role in the unrest.

The commemorations in Normandy have brought together world leaders, many of whom are urging Moscow to stop its support for the ongoing pro-Russian separatist rebellion in eastern Ukraine.

Violence continued in the region Friday. Ukraine's Interior Ministry reported that separatists in the city of Slavyonsk fired a mortar at checkpoints set up by security forces, killing a member of the ministry's special forces and seriously wounding two others.

Also Friday, separatists claimed they shot down a manned reconnaissance plane over Slovyansk. Several videos purporting to show the downing of the aircraft were posted to the Internet.

Dialogue encouraged

On Thursday, Obama had urged Russia to negotiate directly with the newly elected Ukraine government, and he called on Putin to stop the cross-border flow of armed Russian militias into Ukraine.

At a G7 meeting in Brussels earlier that day, leaders warned that more economic sanctions could come within weeks if the Kremlin fails to curb its support for the rebels.

The United States and Britain have been the leading proponents of sanctions on Russian businesses and individuals in Putin's inner circle - but both countries have so far stopped short of harsher penalties on key Russian economic sectors.

France and Germany, which maintain strong energy and trade ties with Russia, have been less aggressive in their public statements.

The Brussels summit was originally scheduled as a G8 in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi. But after Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean peninsula in March, Western powers rejected Putin's invitation and moved the summit to Brussels.

VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez contributed to this report. Some information  was provided by Reuters.

You May Like

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials and human rights organizations assert that Pakistani authorities are using deadly attack at school in Peshawar as pretext to push out Afghan refugees More

At Boston Bombing Hearing, Sides Spar Over Boat

At final pre-trial hearing, lawyers for suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, prosecutors disagree on whether vessel where he hid from police can be shown to jurors More

Iran Judiciary 'Picks' Lawyer for Detained WP Reporter

Masoud Shafii has been attempting to secure official recognition as Rezaian’s attorney, but is not allowed to see his client in prison More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: TALL EAGLE from: Seattle, WA
June 07, 2014 1:52 AM
If you would like to know who the aggressors are... compare the number of US military bases around the world w. those of China and/or Russia...!!!

by: N W B from: UK
June 06, 2014 11:18 PM
USA has lost credibility on world stage after it let Syrian people down in 2011 which resulted of killing more than 150000 dead and fleeing mora than half of population to neighbouring countries in despair conditions. Therefore Russia took opportunity to seize control part of Ukraine and will not hesitate to do it again, Russia signed a deal to sell gas to China for billions which lasts decades. Now Russia more powerful than ever while USA is kneeling down on all international affairs as someone who has cancer.

by: Donald Fraser Miles from: Elliot Lake, Canada
June 06, 2014 6:18 PM
I believe the Ukraine crisis is over. Mopping up the conflict should take little time as separatist and Ukrainian forces disentangle. Putin is amenable to this disentanglement. The D-Day ceremony, the commemoration of sacrifice but eventual victory over Nazism, has created a golden opportunity for peace.
In Response

by: S H from: USA
June 06, 2014 8:31 PM
Except The Crimea.

The Russian oligarchy has spoilt so little of its vast resources that it will far outlast anything that is not empirical invasion.

I'm not suggesting invading, but rather that the Russians have far more resource potential than America. Just sitting there, while we put everything into Now.

Knowing this, the Russians took some warm water port infrastructure, and a powerful capitalist now sits in Kyiv, and even has a tenable relationship with Moscow.

Russia will observe and refine it's position with each passing day.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More