Putin sat far from Macron after French leader refused Russian COVID-19 test: sources

French President Emmanuel Macron refused a Kremlin request that he take a Russian COVID-19 take a look at when he arrived to see President Vladimir Putin this week, and was subsequently saved at a distance from the Russian chief, two sources in Macron’s entourage advised Reuters.

Observers had been struck by photos of Macron and Putin sitting at reverse ends of a four-metre-long desk to debate the Ukraine disaster on Monday, with some diplomats and others suggesting Putin could be desirous to ship a diplomatic message.

However the two sources, who’ve information of the French president’s well being protocol, advised Reuters Macron had been given a alternative: both he accepted a PCR take a look at accomplished by the Russian authorities and was allowed to get near Putin, or he refused and needed to abide by extra stringent bodily distancing.

“We knew very properly that meant no handshake and that lengthy desk. However we couldn’t settle for that they get their arms on the president’s DNA,” one of many sources advised Reuters, referring to safety considerations if the French chief was examined by Russian medical doctors.

A Kremlin spokesman didn’t instantly reply to a message from Reuters in search of remark.

Macron had French PCR take a look at as an alternative

Putin and Macron attend a joint press convention in Moscow on Monday. (Thibault Camus/Reuters)

The second supply in Macron’s entourage confirmed Macron declined to take a Russian PCR take a look at.

The supply stated Macron as an alternative took a French PCR take a look at earlier than departure and an antigen take a look at accomplished by his personal physician as soon as in Russia.

“The Russians advised us Putin wanted to be saved in a strict well being bubble,” the second supply stated.

On Thursday, three days after Macron and Putin had their bodily distanced assembly, the Russian chief obtained Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.

The 2 males shook arms and sat shut to one another, divided solely by a small espresso desk.

Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, left, the president of Kazakhstan, shakes arms with Putin throughout a gathering in Moscow on Thursday. (Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/Kremlin/The Related Press)

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