Monday, 16 July, 2018

President Trump says likely to soon meet with Putin

President Trump says likely to soon meet with Putin President Trump says likely to soon meet with Putin
Marty Perkins | 21 March, 2018, 08:15

Donald Trump has called to congratulate Vladimir Putin on his landslide victory in Sunday's elections, breaking a taboo among western leaders in appearing to endorse the Russian leader's re-election to a fourth term in power.

Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office, Trump said that the two leaders would probably discuss the "arms race, which is getting out of control".

They spoke after Washington slapped a new round of sanctions against Moscow created to punish Russians responsible for attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential elections. President Donald Trump has not called and has no plans to do so at present, White House spokesman Hogan Gidley told journalists Monday.

Sanders was pressed on Trump's call with Putin, but said that the White House believes maintaining a relationship with Putin is worth it, despite some outstanding issues.

Any interactions between Trump and Putin are closely watched given the ongoing special counsel investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. She also cited a preliminary report by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe that said Russia's election took place in an overly controlled environment that lacked an even playing field for all contenders.

The Kremlin said their conversation was constructive, businesslike and focused on overcoming the accumulated problems in Russia-US relations.

"The leaders spoke out in favor of developing practical cooperation in various spheres including the issues of ensuring strategic stability and the fight against global terrorism", the statement added.

Trump said that he called Putin to congratulate him on winning his fourth term in office, and listed policy concerns that the two leaders meant to discuss in the future, including the "out of control" arms race.




Trump "emphasized the importance of denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula", the White House added in a separate statement.

He said Trump had "insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election to determine their country's future".

With U.S. -Russian relations at a long-time low, Peskov said, "Putin remains open for normalizing relations with our American partners where it is in our interests".

Putin has struck a softer tone toward the West since Sunday, saying he has no desire for an arms race and would do everything he could to resolve differences with other countries.

U.S. officials as recently as last week promoted the idea of a Russia-U.S. meeting in the near future in order to discuss the arms race and crises in Ukraine, Syria and North Korea.

Putin denied that Russian Federation had any role and called the claim "nonsense". They met on the sidelines of an worldwide summit in Germany last summer and again more informally at another gathering of world leaders in Vietnam in November.

Other western leaders have called Putin following the Russian election, including the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, and President Emmanuel Macron of France. Trump has said there was no collusion between his presidential campaign and Russians.

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