President Barack Obama concluded a two-day summit with conciliatory words for Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and an address that praised Russia's contribution to culture and the arts while challenging the Kremlin to change its behavior and policies.
Following some tough talk before his trip, Mr. Obama's visit to Moscow is likely to fuel criticism from some in the U.S. who see the "reset" he has proposed for relations with Russia as a series of concessions by Washington, Wall Street Journal report.
Results for Obama's first Moscow summit are mixed. He ended up getting the expected agreement on deep cuts in nuclear arsenals, but he is leaving Moscow with few assurances of Kremlin help in solving other issues key to his foreign policy agenda.
He is also leaving behind a spark he hopes will blaze to life and thaw U.S. relations with a former superpower with a chip on its shoulder. But his two days of summitry produced no unexpected breakthroughs.
Throughout the meetings and speeches, Obama stayed on message: The United States and Russia have too many overlapping interests to move through the coming decades at odds. The time for confrontational Cold War thinking is well-past. America wants Russia to be "strong, peaceful and prosperous," The Associated Press reports.
So President Obama kicked off a new chapter in Russian-American relations with significant progress on several fronts during a two-day visit to the nation that began Monday. About a year after the relationship ruptured over the war in Georgia, the two sides are now back at the table and doing business, The New York Times reports.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969