On Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky invited German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and President Frank-Walter Steinmeier to visit Kyiv after weeks of diplomatic tension.
In April, Steinmeier was prepared to make a trip to Ukraine, but the German president was told he was not welcome over allegations of close ties to Russia. The snub angered Scholz, who said Wednesday that Ukraine had to make efforts to mend ties.
Zelensky and Steinmeier held a phone thaw Thursday in an apparent attempt to ease tensions. According to Steinmeier’s office, the two presidents held a “very important and very good” phone call.
Ukraine’s claims of Steinmeier being close to Russia stem from his previous support for the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, which would connect Russia and Germany. Around the time Russia invaded Ukraine, Scholz suspended the pipeline.
Scholz’s government has also come under fire from Ukraine for being hesitant to send heavy weapons to Kyiv. Responding to the criticism, Scholz warned of the dangers of nuclear war, but his government has since pledged to send Ukraine Gepard anti-aircraft tanks.