Putin makes flying go to to Austrian overseas minister’s wedding ceremony


Putin dropped in on Karin Kneissl’s wedding ceremony in a distant space of southern Austria, on his option to a gathering with Chancellor Angela Merkel in neighboring Germany later that day.

The Russian president was pictured dancing with Kneissl, who was wearing a conventional “dirndl” gown, in a winery in Styria province.

Putin arrived with a bouquet of flowers and even introduced a Cossack choir with him to entertain the bride and her groom, the entrepreneur Wolfgang Meilinger, in keeping with Russian state-run information company TASS.

Invitation ‘symbolic and dangerous’

However the invitation got here below fireplace from some Austrian opposition politicians, who stated it undermined the EU’s overseas coverage on Russia. The EU rolled out a raft of sanctions against Russia in 2014, in response to its occupation, after which annexation, of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine.

Added to this, was the expulsion of Russian diplomats from many EU nations earlier this yr. That transfer was a response to British allegations of Kremlin involvement within the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter within the English metropolis of Salisbury in March.

Austria's Sebastian Kurz, a rock star to conservatives, walks a 'thin red line' in Europe
Austria, which is led by Chancellor Sebastian Kurz of the Austrian Individuals’s Get together (OVP) in a coalition with the far-right Freedom Get together (FPO), was one of many few EU nations to not observe swimsuit and expel Russian diplomats. Kurz was additionally photographed at Saturday’s wedding ceremony. The FPO has a cooperation settlement with Putin’s United Russia social gathering, according to Reuters.

Joerg Leichtfried, from the opposition Social Democrats social gathering, criticized the overseas minister for inviting Putin, notably given Austria’s present presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Leichtfried said in a statement on Twitter it was “all of the extra symbolic and dangerous to court docket the Russian president on this method.” Leichtfried added that he and different members of parliament had a listing of inquiries for the overseas minister over this “working go to.”

International Minister Kneissl is just not recognized to have a very shut friendship with Putin, reported Reuters.

In an earlier model of this story we incorrectly said Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s political social gathering.

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