Saturday 10/16/21
US-RUSSIA

Eagerly awaited Biden-Putin summit set for 16 June in Geneva

The White House and the Kremlin announced the date on Tuesday.
HANDOUT - Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a ceremony to receive credentials from ambassadors of 23 foreign countries at the Alexander Hall of the Grand Kremlin Palace on May 18. The White House and the Kremlin confirmed on Tuesday that US President Joe Biden and Putin will meet on June 16 in Geneva for a summit. Photo: -/Kremlin/dpa - ATTENTION: editorial use only and only if the credit mentioned above is referenced in full
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a ceremony to receive credentials from foreign ambassadors. Photo: Kremlin/dpa.

US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet on 16 June in Geneva for an eagerly anticipated face-to-face session that comes at a time of worsening tensions between the rival powers.

The White House and the Kremlin announced the date on Tuesday. The idea was proposed by Biden in a phone call to Putin in April, but until now the Kremlin has been cagey about whether or not Putin would accept the invitation.

The Kremlin said the two would discuss bilateral relations, strategic stability, settlement of regional conflicts and anti-pandemic cooperation, Russia's TASS news agency reported.

"The leaders will discuss the full range of pressing issues, as we seek to restore predictability and stability to the US-Russia relationship," read a White House statement.

For Biden, the meeting in the Swiss city will likely come at the end of his first overseas trip in office. He is already scheduled to attend the G7 summit in Cornwall, England from 11 to 13 June, then travel to the NATO summit in Brussels on June 14.

Electoral interference allegations

Biden has raised the stakes in US relations with Putin, who has been in power more than two decades, since taking office in January.

US-Russia ties have nose-dived over Washington's allegations of election interference and cyberattacks, the treatment of jailed Russian dissident Alexei Navalny and the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

The two sides have imposed a wave of sanctions and counter-sanctions and expelled each other's diplomats.

Furthermore, during a televised interview, Biden responded affirmatively when asked if he thought Putin was "a killer" - an answer that outraged the Kremlin - and warned Putin would "pay a price" for the election interference.

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