Reid, Boehner Refuse to Meet with Russian Lawmakers on Syria

Russia "disappointed" with the decision

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WASHINGTON - JULY 23: U.S. President Barack Obama (C) meets with Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) (L) in the Cabinet Room of the White House.

Even as President Obama rolled into the G-20 summit with a conciliatory gesture towards Putin — a little Russian flag flapping above the fender of his presidential Cadillac — U.S. Congressmen were sending a sterner message to their Russian counterparts. On Thursday night, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid confirmed that Reid and House Speaker John Boehner rejected an invitation from Russian lawmakers to meet over Syria.

(MORE: At the G20, Obama’s Syria Efforts Take a Hit as Putin Gains Support)

A spokesman for the Russian Embassy announced his disappointment with their decision, according to CBS News. The rejection comes after a series of rebuffs and reconciliations between U.S. and Russian officials, most notably Obama’s cancellation of a one-on-one meeting with Putin earlier this summer, as the countries move further apart on a slew of issues. With Syria, human rights abuses and the fate of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden all unresolved, expect more tiny flags, and rebuffed overtures, in the months ahead.

[CBS News]