MOSCOW, June 7. /TASS/. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has denied rumors that Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani did not attend the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in person because his face-to-face meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin could not be arranged. Peskov told reporters on Monday that a comprehensive visit of the Qatari leader to Russia can take place after coronavirus-related restrictions are lifted.
“Of course not,” he said when asked if Al Thani chose not to travel to St. Petersburg because his personal meeting with Putin was not scheduled.
The spokesman recalled that “certain [pandemic-related] restrictions continue to stay in place in various countries around the world.” “These restrictions simply made it impossible to conduct a full-fledged working visit of the head of Qatar to Russia,” he said. “As soon as conditions permit, this visit will definitely take place,” he assured.
Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz took part in the SPIEF plenary session on June 4 via videoconference. Putin spoke at the event in person.