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"Russia Today" Reports Hollande & Merkel Visit To Moscow Shows Split With U.S.: Europe Won't Arm Ukraine

Russia's state-funded English-language world news station reports on backroom talks to end the conflict in Ukraine between the leaders of France, Germany and Russia in Moscow.

RT CORRESPONDENT: Mystery surrounds the arrival of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande in Moscow for these talks, but there is also hushed anticipation for the meeting. We also know that the French and German leaders were in Kiev yesterday for a meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. No details have been made public about what came out of that meeting.

Today's meeting in Moscow all the more fascinating, as to what may be revealed with regard to a permanent and lasting peace plan for Ukraine. We do know that over the course of the past seven days, President Putin was in touch with Paris and Berlin over ways that the three nations can work together to help put an end to the conflict.

Since that communication Chancellor Merkel is now in Moscow for the first time since the conflict erupted last spring in Ukraine. As for Hollande it is his second meeting in as many months to meet with Mr. Putin.

So signs that something substantive is finally in the air here. The language is cautious as you might expect, but there is also positivity.


BRIAN BECK, "ANTI-WAR ANSWER COALITION" DIRECTOR: I think the hardliners here are in Washington D.C. in the U.S. State Department, among the neoconservatives, in the Pentagon. They more than the European allies in NATO are the ones that have been promoting the concept, the possibility of arming the Ukraine. The European governments are even while acting as allies of the U.S. are more circumspect are more aware of the dangers to them and their economies. The German and French governments, they are being harmed as well by the economic sanctions demanded by the United States against Russia. You can see Merkel and Hollande are going first to Kiev and then to Moscow.

This is being done not under the direction of John Kerry and the U.S. and I think the U.S. is concerned that Europe could take an independent path away from the U.S. and the NATO alliance in defense of their own national interest.

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