Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday criticised the gun violence in the United States, saying that people in America are shot dead before they have the time to open their mouths, reported BBC. The comment came as Putin was briefing the media after a meeting with US President Joe Biden in Geneva, Switzerland. This is the first summit between Biden and Putin.
“Everything that happens in our countries, one way or another is the responsibility of the leaders themselves, look at the streets of America and every single day there are killings,” Putin said.
The Russian president also hit out at the US on human right violations, alleging that America built secret Central Intelligence Agency prisons across the globe to torture people. “Would anyone agree this is how you protect human rights?” he said.
At the same time, Putin defended Russia’s actions against Opposition leader Alexei Navalny and demanded “unbiased coverage” on the matter. Without naming Navalny, Putin said that the person knew that he violated the law in Russia and that he was a repeated offender. “He knew full well that he was wanted but nevertheless he came back to Russia and he deliberately wanted to be arrested,” Putin claimed.
Navalny was sentenced to over two-and-a-half years in prison with the court saying he has violated his terms of probation. The Russian opposition leader was in Germany recovering from a nerve-agent poisoning, with Navalny alleging the attack to be carried out on the behalf of Putin.
Putin seemed irritated at the briefing when asked about Russia’s treatment of political opponents, according to BBC. When a reporter commented about Putin’s political opponents being “dead, in prison, [or] poisoned”, the president hit back pointing to the January 6 riots in the US Capitol.
He said that Russia does not want such chaos in the country. “We sympathise what is happening in the States but we don’t wish that to happen in Russia.”
When asked about the cyberattacks between Russia and the US, Putin said both countries were “committed to discussions” on the matter. The Russian president said that Kremlin has given “exhaustive information” to the US on the alleged cyberattacks but alleged that the US had not responded to them.
“I don’t think the US administration is particularly interested in looking at that,” Putin said on the cyberattacks in Russia. “All they do is make insinuations, what we need is to make expert consultations.”
Addressing other matters, Putin said that he and Biden have agreed that the ambassadors of the two countries should return to their respective posts and resume their diplomatic duties, reported The Guardian. The envoys of both countries had gone back after tension flared up between the two countries.
However, the hostilities seemed to remain between the two countries as both leaders held separate press conferences, reported Reuters. There was no joint meal as well and the meeting lasted for four hours – less than expected by experts.