Putin and Biden Spoke for Four Hours in Their Telephone Call
July 10, 2021 (EIRNS)—The telephone call between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin lasted four hours according to the Britain’s Guardian, three and a half hours, reported TASS. Guardian’s article leads one to one think the two heads of state spent four hours arguing over Russia’s alleged involvement in ransomware cyberattacks. By contrast the TASS coverage of Biden’s comments seemed more upbeat.
President Biden, speaking of his call with President Putin, told the press at an Oval Office signing ceremony: “Well, I made it very clear to him that—that the United States expects, when a ransomware operation is coming from his soil, even though it’s not—not sponsored by the state, we expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is.” This is an acknowledgment that the U.S. has provided no information on the attacks, simply demanding that Russia stop the hackers who are “likely” to be in Russia. The fact that cyber officials will be meeting will probably change that.
“And, secondly, that we have set up a means of communications now, on a regular basis, to be able to communicate to one another when each of us thinks something is happening in another country that affects the home country. And so, it went well. I’m optimistic....”
Then a journalist asked about Biden’s promise that cyber attacks would entail “consequences” for Russia, and asked whether those consequences would follow, Biden replied “Yes,” but gave no details, as he ended the signing remarks.
Later in the afternoon, before boarding Air Force One, a reporter asked, “Sir, what are the consequences for Putin if he does not step up against cyberattacks?” to which Biden responded: “Well, we set up a committee—joint committee. They’re meeting on, I think, the 16th. And I believe we’re going to get some cooperation.”
A reporter then asked what he expected Putin to do, to which Biden replied: “It’s not appropriate for me to say what I expect him to do now. But we’ll see.”