President Joe Biden experienced technical difficulties during his Tuesday virtual meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin wile discussing concerns over the potential Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The Biden team closed the meeting’s start to U.S. reporters, but Russian state media published video of their introduction, according to the New York Post. (RELATED: Biden To Threaten Putin With ‘Significant And Severe Economic Harm’ If Russia Invades Ukraine)
“I welcome you, Mr. President,” Putin said through a translator.
There was about a five-second delay as Biden looked down and appeared to adjust the audio settings.
“There you go. Hello!” Biden said after unmuting his mic. Biden laughed and continued, “Good to see you again.”
“Good afternoon,” a smirking Putin said.
“I uh, unfortunately… last time I — we didn’t get to see each other at the G20.” Biden stammered as he said. “I hope next time we meet, we do it in person,” Biden continued.
There appeared to be a half-second sound delay in Biden’s feed. (RELATED: Russia, China Leaders Total No-Shows At UN Climate Conference)
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met Thursday with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Stockholm over Russia’s potential confrontation with Ukraine. Officials in Ukraine and other western countries worry about an invasion, citing a potential buildup of Russian troops and military efforts near the Russia-Ukraine border.
“The United States and our allies and partners are deeply concerned by evidence that Russia has made plans for significant aggressive moves against Ukraine, including efforts to destabilize Ukraine from within and large-scale military operations,” Blinken told reporters, according to The Associated Press.
After their meeting, Biden “voiced the deep concerns of the United States and our European Allies about Russia’s escalation of forces surrounding Ukraine and made clear that the U.S. and our Allies would respond with strong economic and other measures in the event of military escalation,” NPR reported.