A suggestion from CNN that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky canceled a meeting with German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock over political disagreements is “divorced from reality,” the spokesperson for Ukraine’s Ministry of Affairs has claimed.
Writing on Twitter, Oleg Nikolenko was reacting to a claim published by one of the network’s anchors, Jake Tapper, who reported, citing an anonymous Ukrainian government source, that Zelensky refused to meet Baerbock because of her refusal to say that the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline would be shelved if Russia were to launch an invasion of Ukraine. The official reason was a scheduling error.
“Rumors, ‘close’ sources, conspiracy theories won’t drive a wedge between strong Ukraine/Germany relationship,” Nikolenko tweeted. “Claims that President Zelensky didn’t meet with FM Baerbock in order to send a political message are divorced from reality. We won’t allow anyone to undermine Ukraine/Germany partnership.”
Baerbock was due to sit down with Zelensky as part of her two-day trip to Kiev, and had earlier met her counterpart Dmitry Kuleba. The visit comes as Russia stands accused of placing 100,000 troops on the border with Ukraine, with some alleging it is planning an attack.