Biden, Putin do ‘practical work’ at summit

U.S. President Joe Biden and Russia’s Vladimir Putin exchanged cordial words and plotted modest steps on arms control and diplomacy but emerged from their much-anticipated Swiss summit Wednesday largely where they started — with deep differences on human rights, cyberattacks, election interference and more.

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June 17, 2021 - 8:53 AM

President Joe Biden (left) meets with Russian President Valdimir Putin in Geneva on June 16, 2021. (Denis Balibouse/Pool/AFP via Getty Images/TNS)

GENEVA (AP) — U.S. President Joe Biden and Russia’s Vladimir Putin exchanged cordial words and plotted modest steps on arms control and diplomacy but emerged from their much-anticipated Swiss summit Wednesday largely where they started — with deep differences on human rights, cyberattacks, election interference and more.

The two leaders reached an important, but hardly relationship-changing agreement to return their chief diplomats to Moscow and Washington after they were called home as the relationship deteriorated in recent months. And Biden and Putin agreed to start working on a plan to solidify their countries’ last remaining treaty limiting nuclear weapons.

But their three hours of talks on the shores of Lake Geneva left both men standing firmly in the same positions they had started in.

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