US president Joe Biden and Russian president Vladimir Putin today discussed in detail steps they will take on arms control at a “positive” summit in Geneva.
Putin at a press conference described the talks, lasting less than four hours, as “extremely constructive” without any hostility.
Biden echoed similar remarks at a separate press conference, saying they were “good, positive” with no “hyperbolic atmosphere” but there is “much more work ahead”.
He said the leaders agreed to start a “bilateral strategic dialogue” to work on a mechanism for dealing with new and dangerous weapon systems that start or escalate conflicts.
The two sides agreed to return ambassadors to each other’s capitals after they were withdrawn earlier this year.
A wide range of topics were also discussed, including cybersecurity, Ukraine and preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.
The meeting, held in the 18th-century Villa La Grange, marked the first time the leaders have met since Biden became president in January this year. Biden and Putin were joined by US secretary of state Anthony Blinken, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and a pair of translators.
A separate meeting also took place between senior officials from the US and Russia.