US President Joe Biden will meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Geneva on June 16 to discuss a full range of issues, a first face-to-face interaction between the two leaders amid escalating US-Russia tensions. "President Biden will meet with President Putin in Geneva, Switzerland on June 16, 2021," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.
"The leaders will discuss the full range of pressing issues, as we seek to restore predictability and stability to the US-Russia relationship," Psaki said in a brief statement. The Geneva meeting would be the first one between the two leaders after Biden became the President of the United States. The Biden Administration like its predecessors considers Russia as one of the main threats to its national security. The other being China, Iran and North Korea.
Previous administrations have tried to improve its ties with Russia, including the reset button by the Obama Administration and the efforts by Donald Trump as well during his four years of presidency.
Biden last month told reporters at the White House that during a telephonic conversation with his Russian counterpart he had proposed that they meet in person this summer in Europe for a summit to address a range of issues facing both the countries.
During the phone calls in January and again in April, Biden said he told Putin that the US would shortly be responding in a measured and a proportionate way. "Because we have concluded that they had interfered in the election and SolarWinds was totally out of inappropriate," he said.
Russia has denied any involvement in US elections or on offering the bounties. Moscow has also said that it has nothing to do with the SolarWinds computer attack.
In April, the US announced the expulsion of 10 Russian diplomats and slapped sanctions on over 30 individuals and key financial institutions as it held Kremlin accountable for interference in last year's presidential election and the hacking of American federal agencies.
"We want a stable, predictable relationship. If Russia continues to interfere with our democracy, I'm prepared to take further actions to respond. It is my responsibility as president of the United States to do so. But throughout our long history of competition, our two countries have been able to find ways to manage tensions and to keep them from escalating out of control," Biden said last month.