Biden-Putin live summit: leaders meet for the first time to test the Geneva talks American news


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Expectations for today’s summit of Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin are extremely low. One early test: will Putin show up on time? The Russian president has a long history of keeping world leaders on hold, which seems like a deliberate execution by the KGB.

Michael McFaul
(@McFaul)

Putin will arrive first. Biden second. Putin has a habit of showing up late for meetings (he made Obama wait 40 minutes in Los Cabos in 2012) If Putin is late tomorrow, Biden won’t be clumsily standing around. 2 /


June 15, 2021

Senior U.S. officials, aware of Putin’s delays, have drawn up a protocol according to which the Russian leader should arrive first at the summit site, an 18th-century villa in La Grange Park in Geneva. The Kremlin apparently signed it.




This photo shows

This photo shows “Villa La Grange” behind barbed wire, before the meeting. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini / AFP / Getty Images

Going on Twitter on Tuesday, Michael McFaul – the former US ambassador to Moscow – said this ensured that Biden “would not clumsily wait” for another guy. McFaul also praised U.S. officials for avoiding a joint press conference after the talks, which would give Putin a platform to spread propaganda and “misinformation.”

And more. In 2012, Putin waited 40 minutes for President Obama at the G20 summit in Los Calobos, Mexico. Three years later he was an hour late for an audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican. He even kept the queen hangs for 14 minutes during a 2003 state visit to Britain. It would be remarkable if Biden did not experience similar treatment.








Biden will meet with Putin at a long-awaited summit in Geneva

Andrew Roth, our correspondent from Moscow, is also in Geneva and sets the scene for us this morning:

Biden said he was looking for “stable, predictable” relationships with Russia despite allegations that Putin interfered in the US election, provoked wars with his neighbors and tried to break disagreements by imprisoning opposition leaders.

Putin brings his list of complaints to Geneva in his first trip abroad since the coronavirus outbreak In 2020, he expressed anger over US support for the Ukrainian government and claims of opposition support in Russia and neighboring Belarus, as well as over NATO expansion to Eastern Europe.

While the two sides may seek common language on issues such as nuclear weapons control, there are a number of road wires that could divert the conversation, sparking expectations of a careful summit in which both sides try to move without causing a scandal. One analyst described the upcoming meeting as “household maintenance” after a long period of paralyzing dysfunction between Russia and the United States.

Biden is under pressure to agree to meet with Putin without any preconditions, giving the Russian leader the prestige of a presidential summit with little expectation of any concessions or even progress in the relationship. His advisers reportedly told him not to show up with Putin after the conversation.

“This is not a contest over who can do better in front of a press conference or try to embarrass each other,” Biden said last week, explaining the decision.

Putin looked defiant in an interview on American television last week, refusing to give guarantees that opposition leader Alexei Navalny would be released from prison alive and comparing his movements with the American protesters who stormed the American Capitol on January 6. “We have a saying: ‘Don’t be angry in the mirror if you’re ugly,’ Putin told an NBC reporter, accusing the United States of hypocrisy.

Read more about Andrew Roth’s report from Geneva here: Biden will meet with Putin at a long-awaited summit in Geneva








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