US President Donald Trump will not be coming to Moscow for Victory Day celebrations on May 9, the Kremlin has said.
Russia has repeatedly invited Mr Trump to visit Moscow on the 75th anniversary of victory in the Second World War, the nation’s most important holiday.
Mr Trump said last year he appreciated the invitation, but was not sure if he could go as the celebration falls “right in the middle of political season”.
“Via diplomatic channels, we have received information that the (U.S.) president will not be coming,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters, adding that it remains unclear who will represent the US on Victory Day in Moscow.
Mr Peskov did not give a reason for Mr Trump’s refusal to come.
In an interview with the state-run Tass news agency, a part of which was released on Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said it would be “a mistake” for world leaders not to attend the Victory Day celebrations this year.
“I think that, concerning former members of the anti‑Hitler alliance, the right thing to do would be to attend (our event), from both a domestic political stance and a moral one,” Mr Putin said.
“We look forward to seeing them and we will be glad if they come.
“If not, well, that’s their choice. But I think that would be a mistake for them.”