Biden meets Putin to cap off White House's foreign relations reset

Geneva, Switzerland – With relations between their countries at a low point, US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin are to meet on Wednesday to discuss "red lines" as well as common interests as Washington looks to reset relations abroad in the post-Trump era.

US President Joe Biden says he will address cyberattacks and election interference during the meeting.
US President Joe Biden says he will address cyberattacks and election interference during the meeting.  © IMAGO / Le Pictorium

The highly anticipated meeting in Geneva will kick off in the afternoon and last four to five hours, according to both sides.

The Kremlin and the White House have tried to dampen expectations of the meeting, however, and both leaders will appear in front of the cameras separately after the meeting, during which no joint meal is planned.

The meeting comes at the end of Biden's first trip abroad as US president to Europe, during which he has been consulting with allies at the Group of Seven, NATO and the European Union in recent days.

"I'm going to make clear to President Putin that there are areas where we can cooperate if he chooses," Biden said. And for areas where they don't agree, "make it clear what the red lines are."

Biden has also said that he will express criticism about Russia's deteriorating human rights situation, as well as its role in cyberattacks on US facilities and interference in elections.

Russia says bilateral relations are in an "unsatisfactory state"

Russian President Vladimir Putin is likely to discuss conflicts and nuclear programs in several countries around the world.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is likely to discuss conflicts and nuclear programs in several countries around the world.  © IMAGO / ITAR-TASS

According to the Kremlin, Putin and Biden want to clarify key issues in bilateral cooperation. Relations are in an "unsatisfactory state," it said, and in many areas, there is no contact at all anymore.

US sanctions against Russia have been imposed 96 times since 2011, including three times under Biden, added the Kremlin statement.

Experts are expecting Putin and Biden to potentially initiate new negotiations on nuclear disarmament and controlling weapons arsenals.

According to both sides, topics also include the conflicts in Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria and the dispute over the nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea.

Biden's trip to Europe has been a chance for the US to renew relations with its allies following the souring of ties under his predecessor Donald Trump, whom Putin has described as "talented."

Cover photo: Collage: IMAGO / Le Pictorium, IMAGO / ITAR-TASS

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