German Chancellor Angela Merkel is likely to speak with Donald Trump tomorrow (28 January), a source said today (27 January), as rumours grow that the US president will lift the sanctions against Russia imposed over its reunification with Crimea.

 

The source quoted by Reuters did not say whether Trump might want to speak with Merkel about a lifting of the US sanctions imposed on Russia, as overnight reports from the United States suggested.

 

But if such a step were taken, then the European Union would not necessarily follow Washington, as its sanctions remain tied to implementation of the Minsk peace deal.

 

The Trump administration has prepared documents to lift sanctions against Russia, Fabrice Pothier, a researcher at Atlantic Council tweeted.

 

 

On the other hand, Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko said on 24 January world powers should keep sanctions on Russia, rejecting Trump’s proposal to consider reducing the penalties if Moscow proved a useful ally.

 

Poroshenko told reporters that sanctions remained the only way to keep Russia at the negotiating table over the crisis in eastern Ukraine, that Western powers say has been fuelled by Moscow.