TBILISI (Reuters) – The White House has invited Russian President Vladimir Putin to Washington, U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton said on Friday.
Putin and Trump have met several times on the sidelines of multilateral gatherings, but had only one bilateral summit, in the Finnish capital in July.
“We have invited president Putin to Washington,” Bolton said. It was not immediately clear if Putin had accepted the invitation.
After the Helsinki encounter, Trump was accused by opponents, and even some members of his own Republican Party, of failing to stand up to the Russian leader.
The topic of Putin visiting the United States is a highly-charged one, because U.S. intelligence agencies allege that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election to help Trump win. Russian denies any election meddling.
Trump has said it is in U.S. interests to establish a solid working relationship with Putin.
Trump and Putin plan to hold a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of events in Paris on Nov. 11 to commemorate the centenary of the end of World War One. [nL8N1X377V]
Bolton, who was speaking at a news conference on a visit to ex-Soviet Georgia, said their Paris meeting would be brief.
(Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Writing by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Christian Lowe and Robin Pomeroy)