Putin-Biden virtual summit and its impacts on bilateral ties

(VOVWORLD) - The virtual summit between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday will be one of the world’s major events along with news about COVID-19. Most observers say the summit is unlikely to create a breakthrough for the rather complicated Russian-American relations, but it’s a necessary step to keep their relations from getting worse.
Putin-Biden virtual summit and its impacts on bilateral ties - ảnh 1Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden meet in Geneva in June, 2021. (photo: Reuters)

Early this month the US and Russia both confirmed the virtual summit on Tuesday. Both sides have long lists of grievances related to cyber security, charges of meddling in the 2016 election, expulsion of diplomats, Syria, Ukraine, and NATO expansion.  

Various challenges

President Biden and President Putin held their first direct summit in June in Geneva. But since then relations between the two world powers have seen no any significant progress.

Prior to the virtual summit, the US and Ukraine have accused Russia of moving troops and weapons to its border with Ukraine and planning an attack on Ukraine.

A White House senior official said Monday that “substantial economic countermeasures” from the US and Europe could “impose significant and severe economic harm on the Russian economy” if Russia attacks Ukraine.

Russia has strongly denied the US’s accusation and in return accused the West of provocation by military exercises in the Black Sea. Russia has asked NATO to stop expanding eastward, but almost all of eastern Europe has already joined the bloc. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the press on Monday that Russia-US relations are currently quite lamentable.

“The agenda will focus on bilateral relations, which are in quite lamentable rather state. Then there will be questions overshadowing the agenda, mainly tensions surrounding Ukraine, NATO close to the border, and President Putin’s initiative on ensuring security,” Peskov said.

An online is unlikely to thaw ice when the face-to-face summit in June has failed to produce any result. But the summit is a necessary step toward greater stability in international relations.

Important step to settle disagreements

Despite strong accusations and denouncements, Russia and the US have also made some goodwill gestures. The Biden government has fended off calls for sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline from Russia to Germany. Kremlin spokesman Peskov on Monday strongly endorsed more dialogues to resolve disagreements.

Analysts say both the US and Russia are ready for talks. Their leaders’ two meetings within half a year proved this. Biden is facing pressure to cope with challenges posed by China to prop up the Democratic Party in the 2022 midterm elections. Intensified confrontation with Russia could push Russia closer to China, which would not benefit Biden’s agenda.

Improving relations with the West and the US has always been one of Putin’s goals to strengthen Russia’s status and interests regionally and globally.

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