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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Putin Scraps Austrian TV Interview

VIENNA -- President Vladimir Putin canceled an interview with Austrian state television ORF ahead of his visit to Vienna this week because the station's promotion trailer included "unfriendly" footage, ORF said.

ORF said it had been due to interview Putin jointly with German television station RTL and two Austrian newspapers on Monday before his arrival Wednesday, but the Kremlin told the Austrian Embassy in Moscow that the interview would not happen.

"The official reason for the cancellation, which was relayed to ORF via diplomatic channels: 'Unfriendly reporting by the ORF ahead of the state visit,'" ORF said in a statement Friday.

A Kremlin spokeswoman said she did not have information about an interview request.

ORF says the Kremlin took offense over a brief trailer broadcast since Wednesday in which the station promotes its upcoming coverage of Putin's visit. The trailer includes footage from the war between Russia and Chechen insurgents.

The Kremlin demanded the trailer be scrapped or edited, or the interview would not go ahead, ORF said, adding that it refused to oblige.

The Austrian Foreign Ministry said it regretted Moscow had withdrawn from the promised interview.

"It would have been an opportunity to explain the Russian position," a spokesman said. (AP)