May 8 (UPI) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Emmanuel Macron for winning the French presidential election, urging him to end "mutual distrust."
"The people of France have elected you to the highest office in your country in challenging times for Europe and the international community in general. The growing threat of terrorism and violent extremism goes hand in hand with the escalation of local conflicts and the destabilization of entire regions," Putin's message reads. "Against this backdrop, overcoming mutual distrust and joining efforts to ensure international stability and security is especially important."
Though France and Russia have recently had strained relations due to France's support of international sanctions against Russia following Moscow's annexation of Crimea, the Kremlin's relationship with Macron may already be directly hindered.
Prior to the election in France, Putin invited Macron's rival Le Pen to Moscow. Russia is also accused of launching hacking attacks on Macron's campaign in an effort to support Le Pen's candidacy.
The Kremlin said Putin also wished Macron "good health, well-being and success in performing the important duties of head of state."