Putin-Obama meeting at G20 summit not planned

Updated: 2013-08-09 21:27


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MOSCOW - No separate meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Barack Obama was planned  at the upcoming Group of Twenty (G20) summit, a Kremlin aide said Friday.

"Concerning Putin and Obama's meeting at the G20 summit, it was neither discussed nor planned. We have assumed earlier that (Obama's) full-format visit would take place," Yury Ushakov told reporters.

He added that he possessed no information on whether the two presidents were to talk by phone any time soon. The G20 summit is slated for September 5-6 in Saint Petersburg of Russia.

The official said the Kremlin was not surprised by the White House decision to drop a one-on-one summit originally scheduled early next month in Moscow.

"We were ready, taking into account the discussions in mass media and the political background in the US in connection to Snowden's problem. We were ready both for the visit and for its delay," Ushakov said.

That was why Moscow reacted in a calm way, the official added.

"We know that sooner or later the contacts would perhaps be continued," he said, adding that Moscow would not retaliate Washington for the "disappointing decision."

Ushakov noted that Russia was still ready to cooperate with the United States over all bilateral and international issues.

"Whether Obama comes or not, we'll work through other available channels. The issues on the bilateral agenda are important in any circumstances," the Interfax news agency quoted him as saying.

A White House spokesman on Wednesday announced the cancellation of the Moscow summit, citing the Snowden case as a lack of progress in bilateral relations.