Russia’s help will be crucial for President Barack Obama in addressing the crisis in Syria and the Iran nuclear standoff, but President Vladimir Putin is playing hard to get. Since resuming the presidency three weeks ago after a four-year, constitutionally mandated sabbatical in the role of Prime Minister, Putin pointedly snubbed the G-8 summit hosted by Obama at Camp David, instead sending Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev. Obama and Putin have finally agreed on a date and venue for a tête-à-tête, even if the timing is a little fraught: they plan to huddle on the sidelines of G-20 meeting in the Mexican city of Los Cabos from June 18 to 19. Curiously enough, the same dates have been chosen for the next round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 (the U.S., Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China), which will be held in Moscow.
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