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Putin thanks world leaders for support in 1st meeting since Wagner mutiny

Russian President Vladimir Putin participates in a virtual meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Heads of State Council via a video conference at the Kremlin in Moscow on Tuesday. Kremlin Pool Photo by Alexander Kozakov/EPA-EFE
1 of 2 | Russian President Vladimir Putin participates in a virtual meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Heads of State Council via a video conference at the Kremlin in Moscow on Tuesday. Kremlin Pool Photo by Alexander Kozakov/EPA-EFE

July 4 (UPI) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked his allies Tuesday during a virtual summit in his first public meeting with world leaders since the short-lived Wagner Group uprising last month.

Putin, speaking from the Kremlin to members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, tried to reassure his supporters that his power had remained strong since the mutiny and thanked his allies for "coming out as a united front" in the rebellion.

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Also appearing during the virtual summit were Chinese leader Xi Jinping, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko. The online meeting was hosted by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank my colleagues from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization countries who have expressed support for the actions of the Russian leadership in protecting the constitutional order, the life and security of citizens," Putin said, according to CNN.

Putin told the group that he will continue to fight sanctions levied by the United States and its Western allies.

"Russia counters all these external sanctions, pressures and provocations and continues to develop as never before," Putin said, the BBC reported.

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Putin said that more than 80% of trade between Chinese and Russian people was in roubles and yuan, and called on other summit members to do the same.

In the meantime, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called Putin "weak" as his troops make slow progress on the battlefield in an effort to capture its land back from Moscow. He said Ukraine had won back about 14 square miles of territory in the last week.

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