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Elon Musk's highly-anticipated online meeting with Vladimir Putin appears to be off after the billionaire failed to respond to the Russians.
A proposed conservation had been mooted for on the Clubhouse app between the Russian president and the richest man in the world.
But now the Kremlin says that while the offer from Mr Musk was "a very interesting proposal", an attempt to organise the virtual meet-up had come to nothing.
Mr Putin's spokesman Dimitry Peskov told reporters that Moscow had not received a response after reaching out to the Tesla boss for further details. He added that the matter was now probably closed.
Mr Peskov said: "Apparently there was some kind of misunderstanding."
The billionaire had invited Mr Putin to an online chat on Clubhouse, an audio-only platform which is invitation-only.
He wrote to the Russian president on Twitter in February: "Would you like to join me for a conversation on Clubhouse," before adding in Russian: "It would be a great honour to speak with you."
The tweet was liked 195,000 times along with more than 16,000 retweets and more than 14,000 comments.
It is unclear what Mr Musk wanted to discuss with Mr Putin, though some speculated it may have been related to recent news that Russian regulators are considering fines for anyone using SpaceX’s Starlink internet service.
The Russian politician famously refuses to go online himself because he believes the internet is a "CIA project".
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Mr Musk's initial Twitter approach sparked frenzied debate on social media about what the high-profile pair would talk about.
One Twitter user joked Musk might try to convince Putin to adopt the meme-based cryptocurrency dogecoin as Russia’s new currency.
The Tesla and SpaceX founder has regularly made jokes about dogecoin, sending its value soaring by more than 800 per cent.
As well as his native Russian, Mr Putin speaks English and German.
Mr Musk has also invited the rapper Kanye West to appear with him on Clubhouse, though no further details about when this might take place have been released.
- Elon Musk
- Vladimir Putin
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