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German Chancellor Angela Merkel at Bellevue Castle in Berlin, Germany January 27, 2017. REUTERS/Axel Schmidt


BERLIN (Reuters) - A German government spokesman declined on Friday to confirm that Chancellor Angela Merkel was likely to speak on the telephone with U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday.

Ulrike Demmer, a deputy government spokesman, told a news conference in Berlin that such telephone conversations are only confirmed after they haven taken place.

Earlier on Friday, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters that Merkel is likely to talk to Trump on Saturday and the conversation is expected to focus on Russia.

(Reporting by Michael Nienaber and Erik Kirschbaum)