Russian President Vladimir Putin intends to attend the wedding of the Minister of Foreign affairs of Austria, reported Austrian media outlets on August 15th. Dmitry Peskov, a representative for the Russian leader also confirmed this intention.
He noted that Putin will “drop by” the wedding “on the way to Berlin.” Talks between the Russian President and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are planned there.
The Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl is marrying a financier and entrepreneur Wolfgang Meilinger. Kneissl became a minister from the right-populist Freedom Party- a coalition partner together with the conservative People’s Party of Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.
The Freedom Party is known for its pro-Russian position and has entered into an agreement on cooperation with the political party “United Russia.” In early 2018, in an interview with the Austrian newspaper Kurier, Karin Kneissl said that sanctions against Russia, imposed after the annexation of the Crimea and the beginning of the conflict in eastern Ukraine were not effective.
According to the media, because of Vladimir Putin’s visit, security measures at the wedding will be increased. Special Forces intend to use snipers. The marriage is expected to take place on August 18th, in a winery located on federal land in the state of Styria.
The last time Putin was in Austria was early June. The visit to Vienna was Putin’s first trip to the West after his re-election in March for a fourth term as president.