Geneva [Switzerland], June 17 (ANI): US and Russia have agreed to engage in a bilateral dialogue on "strategic stability" aimed at reducing the risks of unintentional conflict and restraining nuclear weapons.
As per a statement issued by the White House, US President Joe Biden said that both the countries have demonstrated that, even in periods of tension, they are able to make progress on common goals of ensuring predictability in the strategic sphere, reducing the risk of armed conflicts and the threat of nuclear war.
"The recent extension of the New START Treaty exemplifies our commitment to nuclear arms control. Today, we reaffirm the principle that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. Consistent with these goals, the United States and Russia will embark together on an integrated bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue in the near future that will be deliberate and robust. Through this Dialogue, we seek to lay the groundwork for future arms control and risk reduction measures," a joint statement of Russia and US said.
Biden, while addressing media after the meeting with the Russian President Vladimir Putin during the Geneva Summit, said that his Russian counterpart urged him to respect human rights and political freedoms in Russia and asked him to reopen humanitarian corridors in Syria to allow delivery of food and cooperate in preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.
Biden said he had expressed an "unwavering commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine" and discussed the US and Russia's shared interest in preventing "a resurgence of terrorism in Afghanistan".
Raising concerns regarding the arrest of an opposition political figure in Russia who is serving a prison sentence for violating the terms of his suspended sentence in the 2014 Yves Rocher fraud case, Alexey Navalny, Biden told Putin about the importance to the American people of respect for human rights.
"I told President Putin that we need to have some basic rules of the road that we all abide by. I also said there are areas where there's a mutual interest for us to cooperate for our people, Russian and American people, but also for the benefit of the world and the security of the world," the US President said.
There is "more work to do" and the next six months to a year would show whether the US and Russia can engage in more cooperative relations, he added.
This was the first meeting of US President Joe Biden in a decade with the Russian president, whom he last met when Putin was prime minister and he was serving as vice president, in March of 2011. The summit is also the first meeting between US and Russian leaders since Putin met Donald Trump in Helsinki in 2018. (ANI)