No carrots, no sticks: Merkel in Sochi

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The meeting between Merkel and Putin in Sochi, her first trip for two years to Russia, was officially described as a bridge building attempt by the Chancellors office. One can only speculate, but the primary motive of Merkel’s visit was to calm the troubled waters ahead of the G20 summit, which will take place in the city of Hamburg in July. So, unsurprisingly, after receiving the requested assurances that Moscow will not use the Hamburg event as a political platform attacking Berlin’s dominant role in the Western sanction regime, but also looks forward to positive results.