Scholz has spoken to Putin on the phone again

An end to the radio silence: After more than six weeks, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) has spoken with Russian President Vladimir Putin again.

Scholz hat wieder mit Putin telefoniert

Berlin (dpa) - After more than six weeks of radio silence, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) has spoken on the phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin again. The conversation took place on Germany’s initiative, the Kremlin announced in Moscow on Friday. No information was initially provided by the German side.

However, Scholz had already announced the initiative in the Bundestag’s Defence Committee this morning. “Of course, sooner or later one reaches the point where it is clear that there must be diplomatic initiatives again,” said government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit, explaining the chancellor’s initiative. The aim was “to find a way out of this terrible war with its terrible numbers of victims, so much destruction and all the senselessness that war entails”.

Scholz had spoken to Putin on the phone several times after the war in Ukraine began, most recently on 30 March. A few days later, the massacre in the Kyiv suburb of Bucha came to light, after which there was initially no more contact. In an interview published last week in the German magazine Stern, Scholz said: “If there is something to talk about, I will resume contact. Our priority is clear: the hostilities must end immediately.”

The Kremlin said of the Russian president’s conversation with Scholz that Putin had provided “detailed” information about Russia’s objectives in Ukraine. One focus of the talks was on humanitarian aspects. It was agreed that the discussion would be continued “through various channels”.