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The President also stuck to the message he had been sending for days. He said he wanted to find areas of cooperation with Putin while making it clear that the US will react if he acts “as in the past”.
“I met him. It’s bright. It’s tough, ”said Biden. “And I’ve found that, as they said when I was playing ball, he is a worthy opponent.”
Biden and Putin will meet in Geneva, Switzerland on Wednesday before Biden will hold his own press conferences after the meeting. The White House saw the timing of the meeting as an opportunity for Biden to hear the concerns of American allies in NATO and the European Union before the one-on-one meeting.
Biden said at a press conference on Sunday that he agreed with Putin’s latest assessment that US-Russia relations were at a “low”.
Reporters asked him on Monday about another passage from Putin’s NBC interview asking the Russian President for Biden’s assessment of he was a murderer. Putin laughed.
And when Biden was asked on Monday whether he still thinks Putin is a murderer, he laughed too.
“Well, you see, he made it clear that – the answer is, I think he essentially acknowledged in the past that it was him, that there were certain things that he did or would do. But you see, when I got that question on the air, I answered it honestly, ”Biden said.
“But I don’t think it matters much in relation to this next meeting we’re going to have.”