September 24, 2015 / 2:50 PM / 2 years ago

Obama to meet Putin at Russian leader's request: U.S. official

U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and Russia's President Vladimir Putin attend a family photo shoot for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders' meeting at the International Convention Center at Yanqi Lake in Beijing, November 11, 2014.Kim Kyung-Hoon

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin next week while both men are in New York for the United Nations General Assembly at Putin's request, a senior Obama administration official said on Thursday.

"Given the situations in Ukraine and Syria, despite our profound differences with Moscow, the president believes that it would be irresponsible not to test whether we can make progress through high-level engagement with the Russians," the U.S. official said.

"President Obama will take advantage of this meeting to discuss Ukraine, and he will be focused on ensuring Moscow lives up to the Minsk commitments. This will be the core message of this bilateral engagement."

Reporting by Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton; Editing by Eric Walsh

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