Russian president Vladimir Putin congratulated Emmanuel Macron on his victory in the French presidential election and wished him “strong health” in his tasks ahead, the Kremlin said Monday morning.

In a congratulatory telegram, Mr Putin said he was ready to constructively work together on bilateral, regional and global issues as this was in the fundamental interests of both France and Russia.

“The citizens of France have entrusted you the leadership of the country at a difficult time for Europe and for the entire international community,” Mr Putin said, adding that the growing threat of terrorism and the destabilization of entire regions, it was “particularly important to overcome mutual distrust and unite efforts to ensure international stability and security.”

Earlier, Ukraine’s Petro Poroshenko, the pro-western president of a country which has been in a three-year quasi state of war with Russia, congratulated Mr Macron via Twitter in French saying:

Congratulations to @EmmanuelMacron with a spectacular victory! Important vote of confidence of the French in a United Europe!

The Ukrainian leader, who has pledged to bring his country closer to the EU, added: “Let us count on ambitious collaboration with France and the intensification of the Normandy format!”

This is a reference to the so-called Normandy Format of international talks through which the leaders of France, Germany and Ukraine in early 2015 brokered the Minsk peace accords together with Russia, but which have so far failed to bring lasting peace to the continent’s bloodiest conflict since the 1990s Balkan wars.

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