Talks are in the works for a summit between President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin this summer, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said Friday.
The meeting is likely to occur in a third country, but it is not yet clear where.
“President Biden has indicated in his conversations with President Putin, and publicly, he believes that such a summit would be valuable in establishing better understandings between our two countries and the possibility of getting this relationship on a more stable, predictable path,” Sullivan said during a Friday security forum, first reported Defense News.
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Biden has taken a hard line with Russia since entering office, condemning Putin as a “killer” and launching sanctions against the Kremlin following reports of their attempted interference in the 2020 general election.
Earlier this month, the Kremlin ordered troops to their western border with Ukraine in what some security officials feared was preparation for an invasion.
Biden has thrown his support behind Ukrainian sovereignty against Moscow aggression – a topic Sullivan said would be at the top of the summit’s agenda.
Russia has since removed troops from Ukraine’s border, but U.S. security officials remain skeptical of Putin’s intentions.
Sullivan skirted questions on what he thinks Putin’s motivation was for the military buildup but said it was not out of the question for the U.S. to send aid to Ukraine.
“The United States has fielded requests from the Ukrainians in the past and supplied them, and will field requests in the future and be willing to provide certain types of materiel,” Sullivan said. “So that’s an ongoing dialogue between our security teams and their security teams.”
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The chief security advisor said the U.S. is relying on “high-level, private diplomatic channels to communicate with the Russians,” facilitated by France and Germany.