Russia, Germany emphasize shared interest despite frictions
Maas said Berlin and Moscow also must be able to discuss issues that directly involve them both, such as charges brought in Germany against a Russian accused of killing a Georgian man in Berlin a year ago and the accusations leveled at another Russian over his alleged role in the hacking of the German parliament.
“Wherever needed, it’s important that we talk openly. That’s how we did it in the past as well,” he said.
German prosecutors have filed murder charges against the Russian man accused of killing Zelimkhan “Tornike” Khangoshvili, a Georgian citizen of Chechen ethnicity who fought against Russian troops in Chechnya. The prosecutors said the suspect had acted on orders from the Russian authorities.
The case prompted Germany to expel two Russian diplomats in December, citing a lack of cooperation with the investigation. Russia has dismissed the German criticism and insisted it has remained ready to cooperate.
In the 2015 parliament hacking incident, German prosecutors have issued a warrant for Dmitry Badin, who is allegedly an officer with Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency. Badin was already being sought by U.S. authorities and is believed to be part of the hacker group known as APT28, or Fancy Bear.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has cited “hard evidence” that correspondence from her parliamentary office was among the documents targeted in the attack.
“Germany will protect the security of the people online and offline without compromises,” Maas said Tuesday, adding: “We don’t have any interest that the German-Russian relations hit rocky ...
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