Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he is optimistic to mend Russia’s smashed relations with the US when he will hold his first summit with President Joe Biden.
The face-to-face meeting in Geneva on June 16 occurs amid the biggest crisis in ties between the two countries in years, with tensions high over invocations of issues including hacking allegations, human rights, and claims of election interfering.
“We need to find ways to regularize these relations,” Putin told the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum, further adding that bilateral ties are currently at a “low level”.
“We have no disagreements with the United States,” Putin said. “They only have one disagreement: they want to hold back our development, they talk about it publicly.”
Putin further stated that Washington’s motives were a “mystery” but that policies towards Russia were being shaped “under the influence of internal political processes” in the United States.
Whereas since joining the office, Biden has ramped up pressure on the Kremlin, and his comments likening Putin to a “killer” were met with aggressive criticism in Moscow.
The Biden government has imposed new allegations over Russia’s role in the massive Solar Winds cyber-attack and alleged meddling in the 2020 presidential election.
Both Russia and the United States have downplayed expectations of any major breakthroughs at the Geneva summit.