February 8th, 2009
01:05 PM ET
9 years ago

Russian official: Biden's words 'very positive'

Vice President Biden is in Munich at a security conference.

Vice President Biden is in Munich at a security conference.

(CNN) - A top Russian official Sunday labeled as "very positive" remarks by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on the Obama administration's stance on major nuclear issues and relations with Russia.

Biden spoke Saturday at a security conference in Munich, Germany. In outlining the new American administration's foreign policy, he told delegates that while the United States will remain firm in defending against nuclear threats, Washington aims to work with Moscow.

Relations became tense between Russia and the United States over a proposed U.S. missile-defense shield with components in in eastern Europe.

In his speech, Biden said, "We will continue to develop missile defenses to counter a growing Iranian capability, provided the technology is proven to work and cost-effective."

But he added, "We will do so in consultation with our NATO allies and Russia."

It was Biden's first major speech as vice-president.

Deputy Russian Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov, who appeared with Biden for photographers before the two met privately Sunday in Munich, said he found Biden's remarks "very positive - restarting the button" on nuclear issues.

Also Sunday, Biden met privately with Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili.

Asked before the meeting as he appeared with Saakashvili about whether he favors Georgia eventually joining NATO, Biden responded, "I'm in favor of Georgia's continued independence and autonomy. That (NATO membership) is a decision for Georgia to make." Russia invaded the former Soviet republic last August over separatist regions of Georgia which are supported by Moscow.

More than 300 delegates from around the world attended the security conference, the most recent in a series of annual global forums on security policy that began 45 years ago.

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soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Max in Arkansas

    I'm sure that the Russians are relieved to be speaking with people who actually have brains,

    February 8, 2009 09:37 am at 9:37 am |


    February 8, 2009 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  3. Toby in Illinois

    Finally, a return to diplomacy. That will make us far safer than any war against an idea or war on a tactic.

    February 8, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  4. Realdu

    If Ivanov is happy we are screwed. Why don't we just invite Castro to live at 1600 Pa Ave since he apparently is calling all of the shots in Washington now. And CNN continues to orgasm over Barry Obama.

    February 8, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  5. William from NE

    Obviously, at this point, the political ideologies of the ruling parties in the US and Russia are closer together. We will most likely see considerable capitulation in regards to the ambitions of Russia and the former Soviet bloc.

    February 8, 2009 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  6. Dawn

    Good going VP Biden. We do not need anymore enemies in this big bad world. Bush had done that. Bush alienated our foreign allies and if we need help, they will not help.

    VP Biden has Foreign Policies smarts and can help the the United States begin a new

    February 8, 2009 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  7. Santa Maria

    Why wouldn't a borderline communist sound very inviting to the Russians? Of course Biden sounds great to the Russians. He is pretty much communist, and his ideas will greatly weaken the United States.

    February 8, 2009 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  8. Realdu

    Alinsky is alive and well and channeling his filth through the body of Barack Hussien Obama. And many of us now fully understand the part CNN has played in bring this fascist to power.

    February 8, 2009 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  9. JGBNY

    I thought this was Hillary's job????

    Joe BIden is a a complete NUMBSKULL!!!! Not that Hillary would be much better!!!

    February 8, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  10. Independant Voter

    Finally, we're led by people of reason.

    February 8, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  11. Stephen from California

    It's about time we started playing chess again with Russia instead of checkers! Vlad Putin is a master at political chess and has placed Russia two moves ahead of us. Bravo to Biden for mixing a little Sun Tzu with a good, old-fashioned American "let's just be friends" handshake.

    February 8, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  12. Obama 2.0

    I guess Gov. Palin can relax a little concerning watching Russia, now that we have competent policy mackers and a coherent policy.

    February 8, 2009 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  13. Bombs Away

    What, An administration that wants to actually try to reduce the nuclear aresnal. I thought Dick Cheney's answer was to take Putin on a hungting trip?

    February 8, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  14. Mike - Houston

    Russia always "warms" to weakness.

    February 8, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  15. republicans hate america

    gee the previous vice president would simply spew threats of attacking with our tax dollars.

    February 8, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  16. a true american

    thanks god, the obama administration will save the world against world war 3.

    February 8, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  17. Purple Alaska

    This is a positive step in the discourse of eradicating the bad taste of hostility left behind by Dubya's administration. I only hope and pray that Cheney does not try to manufacture internal terrorism in order to justify their "doom & gloom" fallacies....and if so, may they be overcome by their own demise.

    February 8, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  18. Joyce in Indiana

    I'm sure some Republican'ts will try to turn this into a negative, but I feel more hopeful about international safety and cooperation than I have in eight years. Respect from other countries is far, far better than fear and disgust. We are again making steps toward the long-term goals of peace and security. Congratulations, Obama-Biden!

    February 8, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  19. Bipartisanship

    While I find the new administrations foreign policy refreshing I hope they don't put too much faith in Russia. I think Putin is out for himself and will try to take advantage of Obamas good will.

    February 8, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  20. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    Missle Defense has proven to work well in recent test. We should not give it up in Europe or the USA. For those of you against it when some rouge nation does fire at us you will be wishing you had supported it as you bend over and kiss your @#% goodbye if you are the city unlucky enough to be targeted. How many of you really think this President will retaliate with a nuclear strike over the loss of a US city or two. I don't since they will negotiate first, with the post Viet Nam Era Democrats in charge.

    February 8, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  21. rob

    Another good foreign policy move.

    February 8, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  22. Mike in MS



    February 8, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  23. Da Professor

    We have entered a new era in foreign relations. While we watched as Bush and Cheney mostly destroyed our relationships with the world with their unbelieveable right-wing arrogance, blantant lying, and roaring hypocrisy, a new page has been turned and the team of Obama, Biden, Clinton, and the Obama Advisors will restore our image throughout the world. To which I add ... Thank God!

    February 8, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  24. cheruiyot kiplangat

    we welcome vice president joe biden brilliant strategy in handling senseitive security issues in munich,he talked tactfully,

    February 8, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  25. Bill, ca

    Nilcely spoken Joe Biden. Change is in the air and republicans with there war mongering and rejecting the bailout package can go to hell.

    They are just mad that that the rich are not looked aftert as in the previous 8 years.

    February 8, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
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