Published: Mon, July 16, 2018
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

Trump and Putin open historic summit, USA leader promises ‘extraordinary relationship’

Trump and Putin open historic summit, USA leader promises ‘extraordinary relationship’

"Presidents Trump and Putin respect each other and they get along well", said Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman.

"What I do know is that [Donald] Trump says he does not expect much from the meeting [with Putin] and that relations with Russian Federation are very bad, " Josep Borrell said on Monday in reference to the much-anticipated summit between the two world leaders.

In the CBS News interview, Trump declined to discuss his goals for the summit - "I'll let you know after the meeting", he said - but said he believes such sessions are beneficial. Not mentioned: Election meddling or Syria. The Russian president touched down just after 1pm (1300 BST) local time, even though the official greeting with Trump at the Finnish presidential palace had been scheduled for 1.10pm.

He often holds meetings in late evenings and starts his days relatively late.

"Our relationship with Russian Federation has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of US foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!" he tweeted before the summit began.

A more fair-minded assessment is that this Trump-Putin summit is likely to be primarily a rapport-building session between two unpredictable heads of state.

Undeterred, the American President was set to go face to face with Putin, the authoritarian leader for whom he has expressed admiration. It seems to have changed nothing for President Trump.

The previous two questions were about Russian Federation, and then Trump is asked about who his biggest global foe is right now. He told CBS News he didn't "expect anything" from Putin, while his national security adviser said the United States wasn't looking for any "concrete deliverables".

"Well, I might. I hadn't thought of that, but, certainly, I will be asking about it", Trump said. He claimed Obama "was informed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation about Russian Meddling, he said it couldn't happen, was no big deal, & did NOTHING about it".

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The leaders of the US and Russian Federation are holding a summit at the Baltic port city of Helsinki.

The leaders will conclude by taking questions at a joint news conference.

"Since the end of the cold war, the policy has been that Finland is part of the west".

Trump unleashed his own attacks on those very institutions before arriving in Finland.

The comments came as the president sat for an interview over the weekend with CBS Evening News anchor Jeff Glor. They have also been withering about his constant refusal to criticise the Russian president, who is basking in the successful hosting of the World Cup.

"Nato is now strong & rich!" During his breakfast, he said North Atlantic Treaty Organisation had "never been more together" and said the summit had been "a little bit tough at the beginning, but it turned out to be love".

Trump and Putin are meeting one-on-one with only interpreters present before wider talks involving aides.

Trump complained: "No matter how well I do at the Summit", he'll face "criticism that it wasn't good enough". I think that getting along with Russian Federation is a good thing. He added, "The media shouldn't be the lap dog of any president or regime". "I think the DNC should be ashamed of themselves for allowing themselves to be hacked".

TRUMP: I don't expect anything.

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