Moscow, June 23 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama had a "constructive and frank" meeting, showing a desire of both the leaders to strengthen bilateral strategic cooperation, said a Russian presidential aide.
Putin and Obama exchanged invitations to visit each other's country during their meeting held on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Mexico, said Yury Ushakov.
"Putin invited Obama to visit Russia; Obama invited Putin. They agreed to keep in contact by phone," Ushakov said, refuting media reports that painted the meeting between the two leaders as difficult and rigid.
In fact, the media treated the meeting as virtually the centerpiece of the G20 summit, he said.
"A number of US pundits drew the hasty conclusion that the talks had been difficult, but this was based solely on the facial expressions and body language of the two leaders during the short time when the press was present," Ushakov said.
"But I would say that the meeting was constructive and frank, it showed the desire of both leaders to strengthen bilateral strategic cooperation. The atmosphere was very cordial."
The presidential aide also said that the meeting lasted over two hours instead of the planned an hour and 15 minutes.