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U.S. Department of State

Department Seal U.S.-Russian Summits, 1992-2000

Prepared by the Office of the Historian
Bureau of Public Affairs, U.S. Department of State
July 2000

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Since the breakup of the Soviet Union on December 25, 1991, Presidents Clinton or Bush have met 23 times with Russian Presidents Yeltsin or Putin. They discussed such issues as arms reductions; economic aid and reform; democracy and human rights; European security; peacekeeping in Bosnia, Kosovo, and the Middle East; and the conflict in Chechnya. In addition to meetings with Russian Presidents, President Clinton met twice in 1999 with then-Prime Minister Putin. Prior to this, every President from Franklin D. Roosevelt through George Bush had met with the Soviet leadership, and a total of 26 U.S.-Soviet leadership meetings were held from 1943 to 1991.

New York and Camp David (Bush and Yeltsin) January 31-February 1, 1992

President Yeltsin's first visit to the United States after the breakup of the Soviet Union was to attend the first-ever summit meeting of UN Security Council members. President Yeltsin then met with President Bush at Camp David. They agreed to continue strategic arms reductions and to cooperate on arms sales, non-proliferation, and ballistic missile defense. President Bush promised to support Russia's admission to the IMF and the World Bank. President Yeltsin announced that an emergency program of humanitarian aid to the former Soviet Republics would begin on February 10. They issued a joint declaration proclaiming that "Russia and the United States do not regard each other as potential adversaries."

Washington (Bush and Yeltsin) June 16-17, 1992

President Yeltsin made a state visit to Washington for the next summit meeting. He and President Bush agreed to continue the START process and set a goal of reducing their countries' strategic nuclear arsenals to 3,000-3,500 warheads by the year 2003. Other arms control agreements dealt with limited ballistic missile defense, nuclear and chemical non-proliferation, conversion of defense industries, and U.S. assistance to Russia in transporting and destroying nuclear and chemical weapons. Both countries declared their support for UN peace and humanitarian efforts in Bosnia.

The United States pledged $4.5 billion as a share of a $24 billion international program to support economic reform in Russia, as well as additional credit guarantees and technical assistance. Economic cooperation would be enhanced by a U.S.-Russian Trade Agreement, bilateral investment and taxation treaties, and an OPIC investment incentive agreement. Future cooperation in science and technology ranged from space exploration to studying the ecology of the Bering Sea and Lake Baikal.

Other agreements marked the definitive end of the Cold War. Restrictions on the numbers and movements of diplomatic, consular, and official personnel were lifted. Consulates General would be opened in Vladivostok and Seattle. Peace Corps volunteers would come to Russia. Russian airspace in eastern Siberia would be opened to international air traffic. A joint commission would try to account for American POW/MIAs who may have been held in the Soviet Union.

Munich (Bush and Yeltsin) July 8, 1992

President Bush held a private meeting with President Yeltsin after the Group of Seven Economic Summit in Munich. President Yeltsin also told Summit participants that the Russian economy was in a worse state than they could imagine, but assured them that "Russia is resolutely marching on the road to market reforms." The G-7 leaders promised $1 billion in aid to Russia, but linked further aid to economic reform. President Yeltsin said he would consider debt-for-equity deals with Western creditors, and announced that the withdrawal of former Soviet forces from the Baltic States would soon begin.

Moscow (Bush and Yeltsin) January 2-3, 1993

After visiting U.S. military personnel in Somalia, President Bush traveled to Moscow to sign the START II Treaty, which codified the nuclear reductions outlined during President Yeltsin's visit to Washington the previous summer. President Bush said that he believed the new administration would be committed to helping Russia. President Yeltsin expressed interest in holding "a working meeting" with President Clinton in a "neutral place."

Vancouver (Clinton and Yeltsin) April 3-4, 1993

President Clinton held his first summit meeting with President Yeltsin in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The two Presidents reaffirmed in the Vancouver Declaration U.S.-Russian commitments to cooperate "to promote democracy, security, and peace." The United States pledged $1.6 billion in additional aid to Russia. Areas covered included humanitarian aid, private sector development, promotion of democracy, energy development, environmental protection, resettlement of former Soviet officers, promotion of trade and investment, and assistance in nuclear arms reduction. Further discussion of international aid to Russia was scheduled for an April 14-15 meeting of the G-7 Foreign and Finance Ministers in Tokyo.

Several high-level working groups were to be formed, most notably a U.S.-Russian Commission on technical cooperation in energy and space, to be headed by Vice President Gore and Prime Minister Chernomyrdin. The Commission held its first meeting in Washington, August 31-September 2, 1993.

President Yeltsin invited President Clinton to visit Moscow.

Tokyo (Yeltsin and the G-7 leaders) July 9-10, 1993

Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin met in Tokyo after the G-7 Economic Summit. They reviewed the implementation of U.S. economic assistance since the Vancouver Summit. President Clinton announced that he would seek the repeal of U.S. trade restrictions dating from the Cold War. The next U.S.-Russian summit would be held in Moscow.

The G-7 leaders stated their support for Russia's reform program and encouraged the former Soviet republics to ratify nuclear arms reduction agreements. They pledged $3 billion toward a special privatization and restructuring program, which would be coordinated by a Support Implementation Group to be established in Moscow. President Yeltsin said that he expected Russia to be admitted to the G-7-soon; he was invited to attend the 1994 Economic Summit in Naples.

Moscow (Clinton and Yeltsin) January 12-15, 1994

During President Clinton's first official visit to Moscow, he and President Yeltsin reaffirmed previous declarations of U.S.-Russian cooperation and took steps toward liquidating military aspects of the Cold War. They agreed to cooperate to prevent nuclear proliferation and the spread of weapons of mass destruction, particularly in the Korean peninsula and the Middle East. After May 30, the United States and Russia would no longer target their nuclear missiles at each other. Russia agreed to convert 500 tons of highly enriched uranium from the former Soviet nuclear arsenal into low-enriched uranium suitable for use in nuclear power stations. The United States would in turn purchase $12 billion worth of low-enriched uranium over a 20-year period. The United States, Russia, and Ukraine agreed to the elimination of Ukraine's share of the former Soviet Union's nuclear arsenal. President Yeltsin announced that Russia would participate in NATO's Partnership for Peace program. President Clinton expressed the hope that Russian troops would soon be withdrawn from Estonia and Latvia.

Both Presidents issued a joint statement reaffirming their countries' commitment to promoting human rights and democratic reforms. They agreed that the sovereignty and independence of the former Soviet republics should be respected, as should the rights of the Russian-speaking population in the Baltic states.

President Clinton announced that OPIC had signed three protocols supporting investment by U.S. companies in the Russian telecommunications and petroleum industries. The United States opened a Russian Small Enterprise Fund and a fund to promote large-scale private-sector development. Former Treasury Secretary Blumenthal would head the latter.

President Yeltsin agreed to meet with President Clinton at the G-7 Economic Summit in Naples, and to make a state visit to the United States in the fall.

Naples (Yeltsin and the G-7 leaders) July 10, 1994

During the Economic Summit, President Yeltsin joined the G-7 leaders in calling on all parties to the Bosnian conflict to accept the Contact Group's peace plan, condemning Iranian sponsorship of international terrorism, and urging an end to the Arab boycott of Israel. President Yeltsin urged the easing of restrictions on high-tech exports to Russia. The G-7 leaders agreed to help Russia join GATT.

After meeting with President Clinton, President Yeltsin said that Russia would not seek full membership in the G-7 until its economic system had matured. He also announced during a joint news conference that, although he would withdraw Russian troops from Latvia by August 31, he would keep the last 2,000 in Estonia until that country recognized the rights of Russian military retirees living there. He hoped to resolve the issue in a meeting with the President of Estonia.

President Clinton described the Summit as the first in which President Yeltsin had participated as a full partner. He congratulated President Yeltsin on the progress of his economic reform program, and invited him to make a state visit to Washington on September 27 and 28.

Washington (Clinton and Yeltsin) September 27-28, 1994

President Yeltsin made a state visit to Washington after having addressed the UN General Assembly on September 26. The Presidents attended a ceremony at the White House to honor American and Russian veterans of World War II. They agreed to continue nuclear arms reductions. Once the START I Treaty had taken effect and START II had been ratified, the two affirmed that warheads scheduled for scrapping would be removed immediately from their launchers. They would seek Ukraine's accession to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and agreed to cooperate to bring peace to Bosnia.

A joint statement of principles and objectives for the development of trade, economic cooperation, and investment was issued, and three commercial agreements worth $1 billion were signed. President Yeltsin expressed satisfaction at President Clinton's decision that Russia's compliance with the Jackson-Vanik requirements linking most-favored-nation trading status with freedom of emigration no longer required annual review. President Clinton signed into law a bill to finance the international space station. Negotiations would begin toward an Agreement on Cooperation in Criminal Matters, with the eventual goal of a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty. The United States promised technical assistance to Russian law enforcement agencies, and a Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement was signed. Afterwards President Yeltsin visited Seattle.

Budapest (Clinton and Yeltsin) December 5, 1994

Both Presidents attended the 1994 CSCE Summit in Budapest. The United States, Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan announced that they would put the START I Treaty into effect, which would reduce the nuclear arsenals of the United States and the former Soviet Union by over 9,000 warheads. Ukraine also signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin announced that they would seek prompt ratification of the START II Treaty, which would eliminate 5,000 more warheads. President Yeltsin warned against "plunging Europe into a cold peace" through an enlargement of NATO.

Moscow (Clinton and Yeltsin) May 9-10, 1995

President Clinton visited Moscow to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe. He expressed support for Russian democracy and urged an end to the conflict in Chechnya. President Yeltsin said that legislative elections would be held in December and a presidential election would take place in June 1996. Although no agreement was reached about enlargement of NATO, Russia agreed to take part in the Partnership for Peace program while President Clinton agreed to promote "a special relationship between NATO and Russia." Russia also agreed not to supply nuclear technology to Iran, and to take part in a future international regime to replace COCOM, which had earlier restricted the export of military-related technology to the Soviet Union. Both Presidents agreed to seek early ratification of START II, followed by further nuclear arms reductions, and issued a joint statement that would permit the development of theater missile defenses within the limits set by the ABM Treaty. They issued a joint statement calling for permanent extension of the Nonproliferation Treaty. President Yeltsin agreed not to sell additional arms to Iran, although existing contracts would be honored. Both Presidents reaffirmed their cooperation in combating terrorism and organized crime.

The Presidents issued a further joint statement on economic reform, trade, and investment. The United States agreed to support Russian accession to the World Trade Organization and to other world economic organizations. President Yeltsin announced the issuance of a decree that would allow implementation of an Oil and Gas Framework Agreement.

Both Presidents expressed hopes for continued cooperation between Russia and the G-7 countries. It was announced that Russia would attend the next G-7 Summit in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in June 1995 as a member of the "Political-8" (P-8).

Halifax (Clinton and Yeltsin) June 17, 1995

For the second time, President Yeltsin took part in political discussions at a G-7 economic summit. Afterwards he met with President Clinton on June 17. The G-7 leaders expressed concern at Russia's efforts to achieve a military solution in Chechnya, while President Yeltsin sought their support in what he called a struggle against "terrorism" there. President Clinton said that the United States agreed that Chechnya was part of the Russian Federation, but joined his colleagues in calling for a peaceful, political solution. President Yeltsin invited the G-7 leaders to hold a meeting in Moscow in 1996 to discuss means of safeguarding nuclear weapons and technology. The G-7 communiqué expressed support for financial stabilization and economic reform in Russia.

Hyde Park (Clinton and Yeltsin) October 23, 1995

President Yeltsin met with President Clinton at the home of Franklin D. Roosevelt at Hyde Park, New York, after both had attended the UN General Assembly in New York. They discussed Russia's role in peacekeeping operations in Bosnia, and agreed to have Secretary of Defense Perry and Defense Minister Grachev meet to determine how Russian troops could participate in the NATO implementation force. They reaffirmed their commitment to early ratification of START II, agreed to seek a comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty in 1996, and issued a joint statement pledging their continuing cooperation in the safeguarding of nuclear materials during the arms reduction process. They also discussed Russian concerns about limits on conventional military equipment in the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty's flank zones, including territory in the Black and Baltic Sea areas.

Sharm al-Sheikh (Clinton and Yeltsin) March 13, 1996

Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin were among 27 heads of state and government who attended the "Summit of the Peacemakers" to condemn terrorist attacks in Israel and to declare their support for the Middle East peace process. The two discussed U.S.-Russian commercial relations and other bilateral matters in a private meeting.

Moscow (Clinton and Yeltsin) April 20-21, 1996

President Clinton attended the P-8 Summit on Nuclear Safety and Security on April 20, after having visited historical and cultural landmarks in St. Petersburg. The Summit participants agreed to seek a comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty and to promote cooperation to prevent the smuggling of nuclear materials and technology. They also called for a conference of experts to discuss means to dispose of plutonium from surplus nuclear weapons.

Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin held a summit meeting on April 21. They discussed strategic arms reductions, modifications to the CFE Treaty, and cooperation in promoting peace in Bosnia and in the Middle East. President Yeltsin raised objections to the enlargement of NATO. President Clinton said the door would remain open to all of Europe's emerging democracies who were ready to shoulder the responsibilities of membership. President Clinton once more urged a diplomatic solution in Chechnya, and agreed that Chechnya was part of the Russian Federation. The two Presidents agreed on "transparency measures" that would convert highly enriched uranium from nuclear warheads into low-enriched reactor fuel.

President Yeltsin once more sought Russian membership in the G-7. He later announced that his re-election campaign and a last-minute illness would prevent him from attending the next G-7 Summit meeting at Lyon, France. Prime Minister Chernomyrdin represented Russia there instead.

Helsinki (Clinton and Yeltsin) March 21, 1997

During their meeting in Helsinki, Finland, Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin agreed to seek further reductions in strategic nuclear weapons. Once the START II treaty had been ratified, negotiations would begin on START III, which would reduce the United States and Russia to between 2,000 and 2,500 nuclear warheads by the end of 2007. They reaffirmed their commitment to the ABM Treaty while continuing to permit research into theater missile defense within its limits, and to take the necessary steps toward ratification and implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

The two Presidents agreed to disagree about extending NATO membership to former members of the Warsaw Pact. Work would continue on promoting cooperation between NATO and Russia, and on adapting the CFE Treaty to the post-Cold War world.

The United States would seek to promote investment in Russia, both unilaterally and through international financial institutions. Russia would seek to develop a tax structure that would supply necessary revenues while promoting legitimate business. The United States would support Russia's admission to organizations such as the Paris Club, the WTO, and the OECD. As a sign of Russia's inclusion in the world economy, the next Economic Summit, to be held in Denver, Colorado, in June, would be called the "Summit of the Eight."

Paris (Clinton and Yeltsin) May 27, 1997

Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin met at the Elysee Palace in Paris to sign the NATO-Russia Founding Act. In the Founding Act's preamble, NATO and Russia stated that they no longer considered each other as adversaries. The Founding Act committed NATO and Russia to build together a lasting and inclusive peace in the Euro-Atlantic area, based on principles of democracy and cooperative security. NATO and Russia also agreed to consult and strive to cooperate to the broadest possible degree on a range of issues of mutual concern. To carry out the activities and aims of the Founding Act, and to develop common approaches to European security, a NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council was established in Brussels. In the Founding Act, NATO reaffirmed that it had no plans to deploy nuclear weapons in new member states, and reiterated that in the current and foreseeable security environment, the alliance would carry out its collective defense and other missions by ensuring the necessary interoperability, integration, and capability for reinforcement rather than by additional permanent stationing of substantial combat forces. President Clinton and President Yeltsin held a private meeting at the U.S. Embassy Residence that evening.

Denver (Clinton and Yeltsin) (June 20-21, 1997)

President Yeltsin met with President Clinton after his arrival in Denver on June 20. Clinton announced that Russia would be admitted to the Paris Club. President Clinton urged President Yeltsin to seek ratification of the START II Treaty and the Chemical Weapons Convention. After a meeting on June 21, the Presidents of the United States, Russia, and France agreed to stricter sanctions against Iraq unless UN inspectors were able to demonstrate that it was cooperating to eliminate its weapons of mass destruction.

The "Summit of the Eight" was the first Economic Summit in which Russia participated as an equal. Russian representatives attended every meeting except one on financial goals, and President Yeltsin joined the other leaders in signing the communique.

Birmingham (Clinton and Yeltsin) May 15-17, 1998

President Yeltsin joined with his G-8 counterparts at Birmingham, England, on May 15 to discuss the economic crisis in Indonesia and India's nuclear tests. He met with President Clinton at Weston Park on May 17. President Clinton once more urged President Yeltsin to seek ratification of the START II Treaty and proposed a summit meeting in Moscow for discussing further strategic arms reductions. He hoped that this meeting would serve as a positive alternative for would-be nuclear powers like India and Pakistan. President Yeltsin reaffirmed his commitment to ending transfers of Russian missile technology to Iran.

Moscow (Clinton and Yeltsin) September 1-2, 1998

President Clinton visited Moscow on September 1-2 for a Summit Meeting. They agreed to exchange information on missile launchings and early warning and to remove 50 metric tons of plutonium from their countries' nuclear weapons stocks. A joint statement reaffirmed their commitments to promote non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; after Russia ratified START II, negotiations for a START III treaty would begin. Other joint statements dealt with implementing the Convention on the Prohibition of Biological Weapons, promotion of commerce and investment, promotion of technological cooperation, and cooperation between non-governmental organizations. A memorandum of understanding was signed concerning civil aviation safety and accident investigation. Both called for peace in Kosovo and condemned terrorism. Russia offered to host a G-8 conference on transnational crime in 1999.

Cologne (Clinton and Yeltsin) June 19-20, 1999

During the G-8 Economic Summit meeting in Cologne, Germany, Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin reaffirmed their commitment to nuclear arms reductions and to the ABM Treaty. Further arms reductions were planned once START II was ratified; discussions of START III and the ABM Treaty could begin in the fall. President Clinton reaffirmed his support for economic aid to Russia. During an interview with a Russian reporter, he said that Russia was now "a full member of the G-8." An agreement was reached formally authorizing Russian participation in the Kosovo peacekeeping force. The G-8 leaders endorsed a Balkan Stability Pact to promote democratic and economic reforms in Southeastern Europe.

Auckland and Oslo (Clinton and Putin) September 12 and November 2, 1999

In addition to meetings with the Russian President, President Clinton met twice with then-Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Mr. Putin became Russian Prime Minister in August 1999. On September 12, 1999, President Clinton and Prime Minister Putin met on the margins of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit at Auckland, New Zealand. They discussed issues relating to crime and corruption, the Russian economy, prospects for Russian ratification of START II, the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, and the situation in the North Caucasus. On November 2, 1999, President Clinton and Prime Minister Putin held a meeting at Oslo, Norway, in which they discussed the conflict in Chechnya, the CFE Treaty and the ABM Treaty.

Istanbul (Clinton and Yeltsin) November 18, 1999

At the start of the OSCE Summit Meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, President Clinton met with President Yeltsin to discuss arms control, Chechnya, and events in Europe. In his opening address to the Summit, President Clinton said that the international community did not dispute Russia's right to defend its territorial integrity and to fight terrorism, but warned that seeking a military solution in Chechnya would only worsen the situation. He called for an OSCE role in seeking a political solution in Chechnya, and compared Western concerns for human rights in Chechnya to Western support for Russian democracy during the attempted coup in 1991.

Moscow (Clinton and Putin) June 3-5, 2000

In the course of a European trip, President Clinton visited Moscow for his first Summit meeting with newly elected Russian President Vladimir Putin. The two Presidents signed a joint statement of principles on strategic stability. The statement affirmed a commitment to maintain and strengthen strategic stability, acknowledging that the world had changed since 1972 because of the new threat of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile technology. The joint statement also acknowledged that changes in the strategic environment might necessitate changes to the 1972 ABM Treaty, and reaffirmed the commitment of both sides to pursue further reduction in offensive arms in parallel with discussions on defense systems. Experts in the two countries would develop a series of cooperative measures responding to the ballistic missile threat, and would continue discussions on the START III and ABM Treaty.

President Clinton congratulated Russia on its new President, new government, and new Duma. Presidents Clinton and Putin discussed the new government's plans for economic growth and reform, religious freedom, and climate change. President Clinton restated his opposition to Russian policy in Chechnya, and on the problem of corruption stressed the need for rule of law as the underpinning of Russian reform. The two Presidents agreed to establish a joint data exchange center in Moscow to share early warning information on missile and space launches. It would be the first permanent U.S.-Russian military operation ever, with Russian and American military officials working side by side 24 hours a day. The two Presidents also agreed that each country would destroy 34 tons of military grade plutonium. President Clinton also highlighted the importance of respect for press freedoms, and visited an independent Russian radio station for a call-in interview program. On June 5, President Clinton delivered an address in the Russian State Duma before an audience of Russian parliamentarians.

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