ST. PETERSBURG (Sputnik) — Former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl considered that Russia and Europe should be together, and Moscow is ready for such a unity, so Europe should aspire to that, Putin said Saturday.
"If we want to keep our civilization in this turbulent and rapidly changing world with growing centers of power — not only military power, but also economic and cultural — then, of course, Europe and Russia should be together," Putin said, citing Kohl's ideas.
Putin said that he totally agreed with the ex-chancellor.
"You know our position, which is that we are ready for this. We need our partners to be ready for that as well, they should get rid of phobias of the past," the Russian president said, adding that Kohl was also calling for Europe to do so and look at the future.
In 1989 after the fall of the Berlin Wall Kohl proposed to reunite Germany. The reunification occurred in October 1990. On December 2, 1990 the coalition he led secured the majority of seats in the Bundestag during the first nationwide elections since 1933. Kohl became the first chancellor of the reunited Germany.