The meeting between Putin and Biden began in Geneva

The meeting between Putin and Biden began in Geneva

A summit between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin has begun in Geneva, amid escalating tensions over cyber attacks, accusations of human rights violations and election interference.

The two presidents shook hands in front of the cameras and then entered an 18th-century Swiss villa overlooking Lake Geneva, where they are expected to converse for several hours.

Putin is reported to have expressed hope that the meeting will be » productive, «while Biden said that» it is always better to meet face to face, «also calling the United States and Russia»two great powers.»

It is expected that the summit will be held with breaks if necessary, but the leaders of the two states will not have lunch together.

Biden’s aides say that the president plans to put direct pressure on Putin on cyber attacks, human rights and Russian aggression in Ukraine. Nevertheless, they add, Biden hopes to touch on areas where they may have common ground: including nuclear arms control and climate change.

The White House said it does not expect the meeting to lead to any serious political agreements — but believes that this is the first step towards establishing diplomatic relations between the presidents, who last met a decade ago.