Putin, Yanukovych meet on sidelines of Olympics ceremonies

Feb. 8, 2014 at 8:32 AM
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SOCHI, Russia, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- The presidents of Russia and Ukraine have met on the sidelines of opening ceremonies for the Winter Olympics in Sochi, officials say.

The meeting between Russia's Vladimir Putin and Ukraine's Viktor Yanukovych came Friday amid continuing protests in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, that has caused Moscow to suspend a $15 billion bailout program, the BBC reported Saturday.

The protests began in November after Yanukovych refused to sign an association and trade agreement with the European Union.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed the men met Friday evening in Sochi, Interfax-Ukraine reported. No details about the men's conversation were released.

On Wednesday, Yanukovych met with EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton.

Putin met with nearly four dozen foreign leaders attending the opening ceremony, and was scheduled to meet Saturday with Japan's prime minister and Kyrgyzstan's president, the Voice of Russia reported.

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