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Biden invites Xi and Putin to the climate summit

Biden invites Xi and Putin to the climate summit

US President Joe Biden has called on Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin to join a meeting of 40 world leaders on the global climate crisis next month, despite verbal attacks on the two leaders in recent days.

“They know they are invited,” Biden said Friday afternoon in the southern White House lawn, adding that he had not yet “spoken to them alone”.

The White House has confirmed that Xi and Putin will be among the guests in a statement outlining the issues of the summit, which will be held on April 22 and 23, and is expected to lay the groundwork for the UN. climate change conference in Glasgow in November.

The White House said the summit will aim to catalyze efforts to “move” the planet’s “warming” to 1.5 degrees Celsius. But he added that “climate improvement will also create examples that will create good paid jobs, advance innovative technologies and help vulnerable countries adapt to climate impacts.”

The Biden climate change summit is a tremendous change in Washington, far removed from Donald Trump’s skepticism about global climate initiatives. When Biden first took office, it was to bring in the U.S. back to the Paris climate agreement.

The invitation to Xi and Putin reflects the White House’s view that cooperation with Russia and China should move forward with climate change, even if tensions arise in other areas.

Since taking office, Biden has taken a much tougher stance on Putin, including when a journalist asked him if he answered “I do” whether he believes the Russian president is a “killer”. Moscow has since remembered his ambassador He described the U.S. as a spiral toward a “street-free street” for resolving relations with America.

Climate has also emerged as a rare area of ​​cooperation between Washington and Beijing summit meeting this month in Alaska, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and China’s foreign policy chief Yang Jiechi.

During the 2020 presidential campaign, Biden called Xi a “truffle” and reiterated some of his criticisms at a press conference at the White House on Thursday.

“He doesn’t have a democratic bone – a body with a small‘ d ’, but he’s a light, light guy,” Biden said of Xi.

Other guests invited to the White House include European leaders, including UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi. Biden has also invited Saudi King Salman, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Climate Capital

Where climate change unites businesses, markets and politics. Browse FT coverage here

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