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U.S. Official: Informal Talks Between Putin and Obama Likely at G20 Summit

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (C) applauds as he visits a theatre during the National Unity Day celebration in Moscow, Nov. 4, 2014.

WASHINGTON — U.S. President Barack Obama has no plans for formal face-to-face talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin at Asia-Pacific or G20 summits next week but they are expected to have an informal conversation on the sidelines, a senior U.S. official has said.

Obama and Putin, who have been at odds over Russia's role in the Ukraine crisis and its backing for Syrian President Bashar Assad, will both be attending an Asia-Pacific summit in Beijing and the G20 meeting in Brisbane.

The official, briefing reporters ahead of Obama's trip, said an official bilateral meeting between Obama and Putin was not anticipated. While there is no certainty that they will meet on the margins, the official said there was a good chance they would find time to talk informally at the APEC gathering.

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