Putin “said it’s not Russian Federation”, declared Trump, adding: “I don’t see any reason why it would be.” Huh? Its front page featured an illustration of Trump holding hands with a bare-chested Putin and shooting Uncle Sam in the head with a gun in the other hand.
“There are no objective reasons for difficulties [between Russian Federation and the US]. The Cold War is a thing of the past, the situation in the world has drastically changed”, said Putin.
Trump’s statements at Monday’s news conference prompted some Democrats to publicly speculate about the reasons behind his deference to Putin.
“Business associates of Mr. Browder have earned over $1.5 billion in Russian Federation”, said Putin via an interpreter.
“I think it was great today, but I think it was really bad five hours ago”.
“Nothing would be easier politically than to refuse to meet, refuse to engage, but that would not accomplish anything”. And what I would tell the Russians is exactly what I have told their ambassador and others, is, if you thought it was going to help things, it’s actually backfired, because there can be no rapprochement with Russia, no engagement with Russia because of the meddling in the election. According to the Associated Press, the individual identified himself as a reporter from the U.S. magazine The Nation and his protest sign was about nuclear weapons.
Russian President Vladimir Putin landed in Helsinki nearly an hour late, tossed off his jacket while still on the tarmac and climbed into a new Russian-made limousine on its first foreign tour.
The two leaders also committed to securing Israel’s border with Syria in accordance with the 1974 Agreement on Disengagement between Israel and Syria. Trump said his meeting with Putin went “very well”, adding that he and the Russian leader discussed the “disagreements” between the U.S. and Russia “at length”, including the subject of election interference. They say the former reality star and relentless tabloid self-promoter believes that any suggestion of Russian interference undermines his victory – and his brand. He gave the Kremlin no reason not to continue such interference in US election processes: it’s been successful (from their point of view), the costs are minimal, and the USA president apparently does not believe it is happening.
For his part, Trump criticised the ongoing U.S. investigation into the allegations as a “disaster”.
Many Putin actions we condemn were reactions to what we did.
Can you imagine a similar question being asked about any previous United States president? “It means that they are competitive”, Trump added.
The talks reflected “shared wish” of the two presidents to fix the US-Russia relations and envision the first steps to do so, Putin added. “I will say this: I don’t see any reason why it would be”.
If that is anathema to many in Washington, Trump’s apparent concessions to Putin over the elections controversy drew stinging condemnation from across the political divide.
Senior Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said Trump’s answer on meddling “will be seen by Russian Federation as a sign of weakness”.
The special counsel investigating potential coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin charged a dozen Russian military intelligence officers on Friday with hacking the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign and then releasing the stolen communications online as part of a sweeping conspiracy to meddle in the election. “This answer by President Trump will be seen by Russian Federation as a sign of weakness and create far more problems than it solves”.
Some career diplomats also expressed alarm.
Before that, Mueller brought charges against 13 Russians and three companies accused in a social media campaign to sway US public opinion in 2016.
On US-Russia cooperation in Syria, Trump stressed that both countries had the potential to “save hundreds of thousands of lives” by working together.