25 May 2018 17:34

Putin, Macron meet female fencers from Russian, French teams

ST. PETERSBURG. May 25 (Interfax) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has praised the development of Russia-France relations.

Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron met with female fencers participating in a friendly match between the two countries' national sabre teams on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) on Friday.

Russia's Olympic champion fencer Sofya Velikaya told Putin and Macron that the friendship between Russia and France has deep roots. "Our coach is a Frenchman. We are all family," Velikaya said.

"Well done. This will be a good basis, a good example in terms of developing relations," Putin told the athletes.

Christian Bauer, the head coach of the Russian team, and Jean-Philippe Daurelle, who currently trains the French women's sabre team, were present at the meeting, as were Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov and President of the International Fencing Federation (FIE) Alisher Usmanov.