Entries in G-20 Summit (2)


Obama, Putin Call for ‘Cessation of Violence’ in Syria

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/GettyImages(LOS CABOS, Mexico) -- President Obama and Russian President Putin called Monday for an end to the escalating violence in Syria and endorsed a political solution, but offered no details about a path forward.

“We agreed that we need to see a cessation of the violence, that a political process has to be created to prevent civil war,” Obama told reporters.

The two presidents met for close to two hours on the margins of the G20 Summit and were visibly cold toward each other during the brief photo-op that followed, as Putin sat scowling alongside a subdued Obama.

U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul later pushed back against the notion that their body language indicated tension, describing their interaction as “businesslike” and saying it was “nothing extraordinary” for Putin.

In their first meeting since Putin returned to the presidency, the leaders “pledged to work with other international actors including the United Nations, Kofi Annan, and all the interested parties in trying to find a resolution to this problem,” Obama said.

Despite issuing a joint statement calling for violence to stop immediately, the leaders were silent when it came to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and whether he should step down. Obama is seeking Moscow’s help to resolve the crisis in the conflicted country, but Russia has so far refused to turn its back on its ally.

White House officials stressed that progress could be seen in Putin’s embracing of a political solution to the conflict.

“From my perspective, we’ve been able to find many commonalities pertaining to all of those issues,” Putin said of the situation in Syria.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama: Greek Election ‘Positive Prospect’ for Cooperation

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/GettyImages(LOS CABOS, Mexico) — President Obama Monday morning expressed approval for the results of the Greek election.

“I think the election in Greece yesterday indicates a positive prospect for not only them forming a government, but also them working constructively with their international partners in order that they can continue on the path of reform and do so in a way that also offers the prospects for the Greek people to succeed and prosper,” President Obama said today alongside Mexican President Felipe Calderon.

A senior White House official told ABC News that the president — and the world — breathed a sigh of relief upon hearing the election results, which meant the new Greek government will seek to stay in the Eurozone.

“And we are going to be working under your leadership and with our European partners, and with all countries,” Obama said, “to make sure that we’re contributing so that the economy grows, the situation stabilizes, confidence returns to the markets and, most importantly we’re giving our people the chance if they work hard to succeed and do well.”

“Obviously we are going to be very busy over the next day and a half,” the U.S. president said of the G-20 summit, adding that “the world is very concerned about the slowing of growth that has taken place.”

“Now is a time as we’ve discussed to make sure that all of us do what’s necessary to stabilize the world financial system, to avoid protectionism,” Obama said.  The summit will allow them to take “one important step in a series of steps that are going to be required to continue to improve global economic prospects.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio