Putin invites Biden to online discussions

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that he would like to invite his US counterpart Joe Biden to an online meeting to continue their discussions of bilateral ties.

Putin told a local TV program that the first phone call between the presidents in January was initiated by Washington, the Xinhua news agency reported.

“I want to invite President Biden to continue our discussions, but on the condition that we do this actually live, as they say, online,” he said.

The discussions could be held on Friday or Monday, and the Kremlin is ready at any time convenient for the White House, Putin said, adding that he would give relevant instructions to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Earlier in the day, Putin said that the US has to take into account Russia’s interests and Moscow is capable of protecting them.

He emphasised that Russia is prepared to work with the United States in fields of mutual interest, but only on terms that are favourable for Russia.

Putin made the remarks amid escalating Moscow-Washington tensions after a US intelligence report on Tuesday accused Russia of “denigrating” Biden’s candidacy during the elections to increase support for former President Donald Trump.