A Trump-Putin Meeting Is Happening Next Week

US, Russia agree to 'continue contacts' in Lavrov-Tillerson phone call

Allegations that Russian Federation interfered in the US presidential election a year ago and colluded with Trump's campaign have overshadowed the businessman's unexpected victory and have dogged his first five months in office.

Trump raised Russian hackles this week when the White House said it appeared the Syrian military was preparing to conduct a chemical weapons attack and warned that Assad and his forces would "pay a heavy price" if it did so.

When asked whether the president would bring up Russia's interference in the election with Putin at their meeting, McMaster said there is "no specific agenda" yet, and that Trump will address what he chooses.

At the same conference, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said that Russian Federation was applying "significant effort" to restarting the strategic dialogue with the U.S. concerning a vast spectrum of issues.

"I find it dismaying and objectionable that President Trump continues to deny the undeniable fact that Russian Federation launched a major cyberattack against the U.S.", he said. He is committed to finding areas of cooperation with Putin, the officials said, and has asked members of his team to continue preparing options for partnering with Russian Federation.

"No preparations for the meeting are underway, no progress yet", he said. "He wants the meeting and the photo more than the discussion". The G20 summit in Hamburg is a logical venue and reason for both world leaders to talk.

Russian Federation has sought to put itself on an equal footing with the USA since the collapse of the Soviet Union, extending its territory where it can, countering US military action and positioning itself as a rival to the world's biggest economy.

Trump's early warmth toward Putin - and his blunt criticism of America's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies for not spending enough on defense - have rattled many in Europe, and particularly in places like Ukraine and the tiny Baltic countries. The initiative is an effort to expand and modernize energy and infrastructure links in a region of Central Europe from the Baltic Sea in the north to the Adriatic and Black seas in the south.

Describing it as a "high-stakes" meeting, National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster explained it would be one of several important one-on-one meetings Trump would engage in with other members of the so-called "Group of Twenty".

It will be Trump's second trip overseas as president following his initial foray to the Middle East and Europe in May.

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