Edited by Desi Tzoneva
On 4 September 2016 at the G20 Summit in Hangzhou, China, Russian President, Vladimir Putin, is going to meet his French colleague, François Hollande. There will be a similar meeting held with German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, the following day. There will therefore be no trilateral meeting between the three heads of state as previously planned. Russian Presidential Aide, Yury Ushakov, has explained that the three leaders have decided to conduct two separate bilateral meetings due to their demanding schedules. The subject of both meetings will be the Ukraine.
Ushakov also added that the meetings would not be held in the Normandy format. Although the Ukraine is not a part of the G20, Ukrainian President, Petro Poroshenko, has nevertheless tried to use the Summit in Hangzhou to arrange for one more Normandy-format meeting.
Putin has rejected any meeting with Poroshenko after the attempted terrorist attack in Crimea. It also appears that both France and Germany consider the current political course of the Ukrainian regime, if not particularly terrorist, at least inadequate. Paris and Berlin’s views on the Ukraine, however, are far from similar.
It also appears that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will either cancel or shift its next transaction for the Ukraine as Kiev has failed to perform its obligations to its creditors. The Ukrainian national currency, the hryvnia (UAH), continues to lose value. One US dollar now equals 26 hryvnias, whereas three years ago, the Ukrainian currency was four times stronger. At the same time, there has been no change in the levels of salaries or pensions in the Ukraine.