Joe Biden-Vladimir Putin Agree To Hold Ukraine Summit With A Condition

Joe Biden-Vladimir Putin Agree To Meet Over Ukraine Crisis, On A Condition

US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin have accepted to hold a summit. (File)

Paris, Washington DC:

US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin have accepted in principle to hold a summit, which can only happen if Moscow does not invade Ukraine, the French presidency announced Monday.

The summit, proposed by France’s Emmanuel Macron, will be expanded to relevant stakeholders to discuss “security and strategic stability in Europe,” a statement from the Elysee said, adding that preparations would start between Russia and the US on Thursday.

The statement said the French President spoke to Biden and Putin and proposed a summit between them and later interactions with “relevant stakeholders” to discuss security and strategic stability in Europe.

“Presidents Biden and Putin have both accepted the principle of such a summit,” the statement said.

It added that the substance for the summit will be prepared by Antony Blinken, US Secretary of State, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during their meeting on Thursday.

The statement adds that the summit can only take place on the condition that Russia does not invade Ukraine. The French President, it says, will work with all stakeholders.

Following the announcement by France, the White House confirmed that Biden has agreed in principle to the meeting so long as Moscow does not invade Ukraine.

The US is “committed to pursuing diplomacy until the moment an invasion begins,” US press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement. “President Biden accepted in principle a meeting with President Putin … if an invasion hasn’t happened.”

“We are also ready to impose swift and severe consequences should Russia instead choose war. And currently, Russia appears to be continuing preparations for a full-scale assault on Ukraine very soon,” she added.

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