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France, Russia Negotiating Resolution To Mistral Deal

French President Francois Hollande says talks with Moscow are being held to find a solution to the suspended delivery to Russia of two French-built Mistral warships.

Hollande said on French television April 19 that "we must find a way out of the crisis."

France postponed the 1.2 billion-euro ($1.5 billion) deal with Russia last year because of Moscow's illegal annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula and involvement in the crisis in eastern Ukraine.

Russia has said it will seek a refund for the helicopter-carrying warships if they are not delivered.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week he was disappointed by France's refusal to deliver the warships but that their absence does not hurt his country's defense capabilities.

Hollande said the issue could be discussed with Putin when the two meet in Armenia on April 24.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP