Obama hosts bilateral meetings on summit sidelines
As the cameras roll on the highly anticipated nuclear security summit, US President Barack Obama meets behind the scenes with world leaders in more than a dozen bilateral meetings to discuss issues of shared concern. So far, Obama has already met with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Jordanian King Abduallah, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Ukraine’s newly elected President Viktor Yanukovich, and Armenian President Serzh Sargsian before the group dinner. High on Obama's agenda is global cooperation in Afghanistan, poverty, climate change, nuclear security and proliferation and accelerating sanctions against Iran.
However, the bilateral talks were seen by some as a personal welcoming ceremony for countries the Obama administration find particularly important for military and economic reasons. The Obama administration is splitting its’ condensed time with world leaders between Obama himself, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Every hour is precious during this summit, and so the Obama Administration will be cramming in more meetings throughout Tuesday before the summit wraps up. Additional bilaterals are scheduled with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Analysts say although the administration is pressing for nuclear disarmament and the threat of nuclear terrorism, some of the countries with the most robust relationships with the United States, such as India and Pakistan, are not signatories of the nuclear non proliferation treaty and have active nuclear arsenals aided and to a degree funded by the United States.