Former President Donald Trump gave a critical take on Wednesday’s U.S.-Russia summit in Switzerland, arguing that Washington “got nothing” in return for boosting Moscow’s profile on the international stage.
“We gave a very big stage to Russia, and we got nothing,” Trump told Fox News’ Hannity in an interview. “I think it was a good day for Russia. I don’t think we got anything out of it.”
Trump argued that the Biden administration “gave up something that is unbelievably valuable” by giving a nod to the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline by waiving sanctions against the Russia-owned, Switzerland-based company that is overseeing the project.
“I stopped the pipeline,” Trump said. “It was given back and nothing was gotten for it,” he added.
Lawmakers from both parties consider Nord Stream 2, which connects Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea, a security risk that undermines American interests and NATO.
At their summit in Geneva, Presidents Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin of Russia spent more than three hours discussing issues including cybersecurity, nuclear weapons, and a possible prisoner swap. While the leaders held separate press conferences afterward, they issued a joint statement on strategic stability.
“The United States and Russia have demonstrated that, even in periods of tension, they are able to make progress on our shared goals of ensuring predictability in the strategic sphere, reducing the risk of armed conflicts and the threat of nuclear war,” the two presidents said in the joint statement, according to The White House.
“Today, we reaffirm the principle that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought,” they added.
The Kremlin said on Thursday it was pleased with what it called a positive summit. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov singled out the joint statement that reaffirmed the two countries’ commitment to avoid a nuclear war.
“It may be a short statement but … it reflects the special responsibility of our two countries not only before our own peoples but, as pretentious as it may sound, before the whole world,” Peskov said.
In the course of their summit, Biden and Putin vowed to begin laying the groundwork for a new phase of arms control, agreed to hold talks on a cyberattack prevention framework, and reached an agreement to return their chief diplomats to Moscow and Washington after they were called home amid a diplomatic spat.