Fiona Hill: Summit with Biden was ‘a very important’ symbolic win for Putin

Source: The Hill | June 20, 2021 | Joseph Choi

Fiona Hill said on Sunday that last week’s summit with President Biden was a “very important win” For Russian President Vladimir Putin in terms of symbolism.

NBC’s “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd asked Hill, a former National Security Council official for Russian and European affairs who served under former President Trump, if she thought that Putin had gotten more out of the meeting than Biden.

“Well, in terms of the symbolism of having a sit-down with the American president, absolutely, that is a very important win for Putin,” Hill said.

“It’s not a win if nothing happens out of it,” she added, however.

“That is just an episodic event and you know he can’t take that to the bank for a long time and cash it in. He’s got to basically present himself at home as the great statesman because he himself has to subject, his presidency to a reelection,” Hill added, noting that despite Putin’s intentions of staying in power until 2036, he must still secure a popular vote in 2024.

Hill noted that Putin has multiple issues hounding him in Russia, including an abysmal COVID-19 vaccination rate with only about 10 percent of the country’s 144 million person population vaccinated.

“So perms got to figure out how to navigate things, he can’t just basically live off an episodic meeting with the United States president in Geneva for months to come,” she added.


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