Kremlin tempers expectations for Putin-Biden summit in June

The Kremlin is seeking to temper expectations for next month’s summit between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Joe Biden but noted the meeting’s significance amid soaring tensions between their countries

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned against anticipating a “reset” after the June 16 summit in Geneva, emphasizing that differences between Moscow and Washington run too deep.

“It's obvious that the negative potential that has accumulated in our bilateral relations has some inertia,” Peskov said during a conference call with reporters. “So it's hard to expect that it would be possible to reach understanding on deep disagreements during just one first meeting.”

“I would caution against having excessive expectations regarding results of the meeting, but proceed from the assumption that the event is very important in practical terms,” Peskov said. “It would be wrong to downplay the importance of the meeting.”

The summit in Geneva will wrap up Biden’s first international trip as president, following his visit to Britain for a meeting of Group of Seven leaders and a NATO summit in Brussels.

The White House also is setting low expectations for the meeting, making it clear the Geneva summit isn’t likely to yield any major breakthroughs.

The Biden administration has repeatedly said it is seeking a “stable and predictable” relationship with Moscow. At the same time, it has called out Putin on allegations that the Russians interfered in last year’s U.S. presidential election and that the Kremlin was behind the massive SolarWinds hacking campaign that targeted at least nine U.S. agencies.