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Wed Jun 16, 2021, 01:16 PM

Putin Says There Was 'No Hostility' as Meeting With Biden Ends

President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia, emerging from his first meeting with President Biden, said Wednesday that the talks had gone well.

“There has been no hostility,” Mr. Putin declared. “On the contrary, our meeting took place in a constructive spirit.”

Addressing reporters at the Geneva villa where the meeting took place, the Russian president said: “Both sides expressed their intention to understand each other and seek common ground. The talks were quite constructive.”

Mr. Biden, faced with a surge of cyberattacks that originated in Russia, had made clear that he intended to give Mr. Putin a choice: Cease the attacks and crack down on the cybercriminals operating from Russian territory, or face reprisals.


Putin: Biden summit was ‘very constructive’

GENEVA, Switzerland — Russian President Vladimir Putin described his highly anticipated summit meeting with President Joe Biden on Wednesday as an amicable and constructive affair, but offered few signs of progress in the U.S.-Russia relationship

“The first overall evaluation, as far as that is concerned — I don’t think there was any kind of hostility,” Putin said of his dealings with Biden. “On the contrary, our meeting was obviously a fundamental one. Many of our joint positions are divergent. But nevertheless, I think that both sides manifested a determination to try and understand each other and try and converge our positions.

Putin also deemed Biden a “very experienced politician” and repeatedly characterized their talks as “very constructive.” Of course, Putin often overstates the outcomes of meetings with other world leaders, and it will not be until Biden holds his own news conference later Wednesday evening that a more complete picture of the summit will emerge.

The total length of the summit seemed to fall short of the expectations of U.S. officials, who had previewed roughly four to five hours of discussions. After a roughly hour-and-a-half initial session between Biden, Putin and their respective countries’ top diplomats, their bilateral meeting was expanded to include a broader group of top officials from Washington and Moscow.


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