At the summit meeting between Biden and Putin, conflict-ridden issues came up – such as the Navalny case. The US president surprised with a joke.
Geneva – US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin held their first summit last Wednesday (June 16) in Geneva. Overall, the meeting between the two politicians was peaceful. It started with a historic handshake.
The statesmen tried to keep the atmosphere calm. The topics that came up at the meeting, however, brought with them some potential for conflict. Among other things: the case of the Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.
Putin and the Navalny case: US President Biden speaks at press conference on the subject
Putin justified the imprisonment of the opposition member, which was sharply criticized by the US and other Western countries. “This man knew that he was breaking the law in Russia,” Putin said, according to AFP information. He was referring to the departure of the seriously ill opposition member for medical treatment to Germany, although probation conditions had been imposed on Navalny in Russia.
In the subsequent press conference by US President Biden, Nawalny’s situation is taken up again. “All these things he says to rationally explain Navalny’s treatment: What do you think will happen if Navalny dies in prison?” Biden replied to a journalist’s question. The case would also be about trust – and a loss of trust would have serious international consequences.
In the video: Putin justifies the imprisonment of Alexei Navalny at a summit meeting
Biden and Putin summit: US President cracks a joke after Navalny question
In his further answer, Joe Biden is finally – despite the serious issue – more relaxed. “Would you trade our economy for the Russian economy?” He asks. Biden added that he had no problem doing business with Russia. But the Russian government is currently not a reliable partner. “No American businessman likes to hang out in Moscow,” jokes the US president.
It can hardly be assumed that with this joke the subject of “Alexej Navalny” has been ticked off by the American side. With his allusion to the “loss of confidence” at the international level, Biden made his point of view clear. (nema with AFP)