© Sputnik/ Sergey Guneev
14:13 31.05.2016(updated 16:05 31.05.2016) Get short URL
Former Minister President of Brandenburg Matthias Platzeck said that the crisis in relations between Russia and Germany was "unexpected" as both countries seemed to have a strong foundation for friendship and mutually beneficial relations.
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The crisis in relations between Russia and Germany, which has lasted now for two years, was a complete surprise, prominent German politician and chairman of the board of the German-Russian Forum Matthias Platzeck said.
"Relations between our two countries are in a deep crisis, which several years ago couldn't be predicted […] at all," Platzeck said while opening the conference "Potsdam Meetings" in Berlin.
According to the politician, the two countries seemed to "have created a good foundation to make such development impossible."
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier also took part at the conference and noted that Berlin needs to make every effort to maintain relations and dialogue with Moscow.
"We have to work on further defending our position in case our cooperative principles are violated, but at the same time, we must make every effort to achieve de-escalation and dialogue," the minister said.
Earlier, Steinmeier proposed to consider gradually lifting of EU restrictions against Russia and engage in constructive cooperation with Moscow.
Relations between Russia and Germany deteriorated amid the 2014 crisis in Ukraine, when European countries imposed economic sanctions against Russia due to Moscow's alleged involvement in fueling the conflict in Ukraine, although Russian authorities have repeatedly denied the allegations.
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