Merkel told Germany's Spiegel news magazine in an interview published on Thursday that she and French President Emmanuel Macron had aimed to convene European talks with the Russian leader in the summer of 2021 but in the end did not see any possibility of influencing the Russian leader, the Reuters news agency reported.
"I no longer had the strength to push through because, after all, everyone knew: she's leaving in autumn," she told Spiegel, as quoted by Reuters.
'For Putin, only power counts'
Merkel said "the feeling was very clear: 'In terms of power politics you're finished.'"
She added: "For Putin, only power counts."
Merkel left office in December after four terms as chancellor. She paid a final visit to Moscow in August 2021.
Putin's Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022 after weeks of massive military build-up on Ukraine's borders.
Many have argued that Merkel and other EU leaders should have adopted a tougher approach to the Kremlin before its invasion of Ukraine, the BBC reported.
Source: tvp.info, BBC, Reuters