Russian President Vladimir Putin and FRG Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who was going from the Hermitage to Tsarskoye Selo made an unplanned stopover at the Petersburg Cathedral of the Saviour on the Blood. The heads of the two states walked on foot to the cathedral and also dropped into the nearby rows of stalls. Vladimir Putin and Gerhard Schroeder talked with citizens and numerous tourists among whom there were also guests from Germany. The atmosphere was lively. The crowd greeted the two leaders; laughter and applause were heard. The President and the Chancellor willingly gave autographs and shook hands. At one of the stalls with souvenirs their attention was drawn by matreshkas, depicting Bill Clinton and George Bush Jr. Vladimir Putin looked with interest at the matryoshka with his own portrait but did not buy it. In another stall the President bought some souvenirs and presented them to the Chancellor. Gerhard Schroeder chose a traditional Russian doll for a samovar. Having done their shopping, the Russian President and the German Chancellor went to Tsarskoye Selo.
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