President Biden sat down on Wednesday for hiswith Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland. Mr. Biden was facing off with Putin after a week of alliance-bolstering meetings with America’s closest allies. He attended his first NATO summit as the U.S. leader, his , and a summit with European Union leaders all within the last week.
Mr. Biden and Putin stood on the front steps of the Geneva hotel hosting the summit and shook hands in front of news cameras before going inside to begin their talks at about 1:30 p.m. local time (7:30 a.m. Eastern).
The leaders were to hold separate news conferences after the summit, which was expected to last up to five hours.
At a, Mr. Biden declined to say what he wanted out of the meeting with the Russian leader, which comes after a series of cyberattacks on U.S. infrastructure blamed on .
The U.S. and its allies have piled pressure on Putin over the cyberattacks and a range of other issues, including his country’s, the crackdown on political dissidents in Russia, including opposition leader , American , and Moscow’s weapons programs.
A recentfound that the majority of Americans want Mr. Biden to take a tough stance with Putin, rather than opting for a more cooperative approach with the autocrat known for allowing human rights abuses.
“I’ve been doing this a long time,” Mr. Biden said on Monday when asked what he’d seek from Putin. “The last thing anyone would do is negotiate in front of the world press as to how he’s going to approach a critical meeting with another adversary and/or someone who could be an adversary. It’s the last thing I’m going to do. But I will tell you this: I’m going to make clear to President Putin that there are areas where we can cooperate, if he chooses. And if he chooses not to cooperate and acts in a way that he has in the past, relative to cybersecurity and some other activities, then we will respond. We will respond in kind.”