WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- The Kremlin and the White House reported on Thursday that the first official summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will take place on July 16 in Helsinki.
- Details were released at the same time by both countries 1 day after reaching an agreement to hold the meeting.
- President Trump himself hinted that the Finnish capital will likely be the venue and included Syria and Ukraine as among the topics to be discussed.
The first official between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will push through on July 16 in Finland’s capital, Helsinki. The meeting was set up by U.S. national adviser John Bolton after his visit to Moscow on Wednesday. Russian foreign policy aide Yuri Ushakov said the summit needs to be held in a mutually convenient third country and requires weeks of preparation.
In a statement released by the White House, they said that the talks will cover relations between the two countries and other national security issues like the supposed meddling of Russia in the 2016 US presidential elections. He also added that Trump’s move to discuss Russia on rejoining the G7 to make it the G8 again is likely to be included during the meeting.
This meeting is expected to be followed closely by worried U.S. allies in Europe such as Britain, who wants to isolate the Russian leader, and Trump’s excessively friendly attitude towards Putin. Further, it would draw fiery criticisms among Trump’s critics back home who doubted his ties to the NATO alliance and, concerns about his disagreements over trade with longtime allies like Canada and Germany.
Another cause for concern among critics is the report from the US intelligence community that Russia meddled in the 2016 US presidential elections to bolster Trump’s candidacy. Moscow has denied the allegations.
On the other hand, Trump was criticized after a brief meeting with the Russian leader in Vietnam in 2017 for trusting Putin’s word when he denied these accusations.
Before the Helsinki summit was announced, Trump wrote on Twitter that, “Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with Meddling in our Election!”
The US President has long since voiced his hopes to ease tensions and hoped for better relations between the two countries.