Russian President Vladimir Putin has told US President Barack Obama that he will not attend the G8 summit in the US later this month.
Mr Putin, who was inaugurated as President this week after an absence of four years, told US officials he was busy finalising his cabinet.
He will send the outgoing president, Dmitry Medvedev, who replaces him as prime minister, instead.
The two presidents will now hold talks at the G20 meeting in Mexico in June.
Earlier this week, Washington criticised the Russian police response to anti-Putin rallies in Moscow.
A State Department spokesman said the US was “disturbed” by the “mistreatment” of peaceful protesters.
Organisers said 20,000 people took part in a protest on Sunday against Mr Putin’s inauguration, though police put the figure at 8,000.
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