GENEVA: The June 16 summit between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin looks set to be held in a plush villa overlooking Lake Geneva, given the security lockdown zone announced Wednesday. The Geneva regional authorities issued a declaration fixing the secure zone around the talks between US President Biden and his Russian counterpart. The statement confirmed preparations that had been visible for some time as police and the armed forces blocked access to the park on Tuesday, as per media reports.
Workers have erected a high metal fence around the walls of the park, some 2 metres high. Police are guarding the entrance gate, which is locked. A sign hanging on the gate states that "the park is closed to the public from Tuesday, June 8, to June 18, inclusive, for a special occasion".
The secure zone screens off the waterfront on both sides of Lake Geneva, a section of the lake itself and two adjacent parks surrounding neighbouring villas on the south side: the Parc de La Grange and the Parc Eaux-Vives.
Views from villas sweep down over the tree-lined parks to the shore, and across Lake Geneva towards the United Nations and the Jura mountains beyond. The eagerly-awaited summit comes at the end of Biden's first trip to Europe, where he will attend the meeting of the G7 nations and NATO talks in Brussels, among other events.