In the White House, the summit of the presidents of the Russian Federation and the United States, Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden, is perceived as a “political duel”, and not as a way to improve relations. This statement was made on Saturday, June 12, by Russian Senator Alexei Pushkov.
“Biden did not dare to attend a joint press conference with Putin – he is afraid of losing to the head of Russia. This will not add credibility to Biden: it is clear to everyone who has the upper hand in this tandem, ”he wrote on his Twitter page.
Earlier on the same day, it became known that Biden would hold a separate press conference after meeting with Putin. A White House spokesman noted that a conference in this format would be “most appropriate.”
At the same time, NYT journalists reported that such a decision is related to the unfortunate experience of the former head of the American state, Donald Trump. According to media reports, Russia reacted positively to the initiative to hold a joint press conference, but the White House abandoned the idea because “it remembers how Putin surpassed Trump in Helsinki.”
The Kremlin said it is aware of Biden’s plans to hold a separate press conference. Putin also intends to separately communicate with the press, said the press secretary of the head of state Dmitry Peskov.
The Kremlin spokesman also noted that the refusal to hold a joint press conference “absolutely does not speak” of low expectations from their meeting in Geneva. He specified that separate communication with journalists is “the practice of the American side.”
At the same time, on June 9, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the summit of the presidents did not have an agreed agenda. In addition, Lavrov pointed out that Moscow also has no overestimated expectations or illusions about the upcoming negotiations.
The Biden-Putin meeting is scheduled for June 16 in Geneva and will be the first personal meeting of leaders since the inauguration of an American as president of the United States. At the same time, for the Russian leader, the trip to Geneva will be the first foreign visit since January 2020.