The Russian and Ukrainian presidents have come face-to-face for the very first time on the grounds of the Normandy Four summit in Paris, which focuses on the years-long conflict in eastern Ukraine.
The high-profile talks, involving leaders of Russia, France, Germany and Ukraine kicked off in Paris on Monday. It’s the first meeting since 2016 of the highest-level representatives of the Normandy Four.
All eyes were set on Putin and Zelensky from the onset, and those watching the footage couldn’t help but notice that the recently-elected Ukrainian president became a bit disoriented.
At first, Zelensky tried to get into the seat reserved for Putin – only to get helped by Macron into a chair across the table.
Путин подсказал Зеленскому, что нужно развернуться для совместного фото pic.twitter.com/Q88g9GMQjf
— Кремлевский пул РИА (@Kremlinpool_RIA) December 9, 2019
Then, a live feed showed the Ukrainian leader missing the timing for the group photo, this time getting some help from Putin, who gestured for Zelensky to turn around and face the reporters.
Since arriving in Paris, Putin has talked with Merkel, while Zelensky met Macron. It soon became apparent that the Monday talks would last longer than expected and the schedule was shifted. The much anticipated tête-à-tête meeting between the Russian and Ukrainian presidents is expected to take place after the main talks but before the final press conference.
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