United States President Joe Biden and his wife Jill are expected to land on Air Force One at UK's RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk this Wednesday to kick off an eight-day trip to Europe, which includes meetings with Queen Elizabeth, PM Boris Johnson, and equally significant Russian president Vladimir Putin in Geneva.
It will be Biden's first trip abroad since taking office and represents a test of the president's ability to manage and repair relationships with major allies who grew disenchanted with then-President Donald Trump's trade tariffs and withdrawal from international treaties.
Will the democratic alliances and institutions that shaped so much of the last century prove their capacity against modern-day threats and adversaries? I believe the answer is yes. And this week in Europe, we have the chance to prove it, Biden said in an opinion article published in the Washington Post.
His trip will have a highlight: the summit with Putin on June 16 in Geneva is an opportunity to raise U.S. concerns directly with the Russian president about ransomware attacks emanating from Russia, Moscow's aggression against Ukraine and a host of other issues.
During his first stopover, Biden will participate in the G7 summit of Cornwall, United Kingdom.
This meeting is expected to be dominated by vaccine diplomacy, trade, climate and an initiative as an effort to counter China's growing global influence.
Biden may face pressure to do more to share U.S. vaccine supplies with other countries after an initial pledge of 20 million doses announced last week.
The key visit to the UK and a difficult meeting
Biden will have a meeting with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday in Cornwall in a meeting marked by Britain's Brexit break from the European Union.
After the summit, Biden and his wife Jill will visit Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle.
Afterwards, Biden travels to Brussels for talks with leaders of NATO and the European Union. The agenda is expected to be dominated by Russia, China and the perennial issue of getting NATO allies to contribute more to the common defence.
However, the most difficult meeting Biden will be facing is at the end of his trip, in Geneva: a session with Putin, who had enjoyed friendly relations with Trump and had starred in many controversial issues from US recent politic history.
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