Trump will meet one-on-one with Putin at G-20, Kremlin says

Image: President Donald Trump chats with Russia's President Vladimir Putin
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin have much to talk about. Copyright Mikhail Klimentyev
By Elena Holodny and Alastair Jamieson with NBC News World News
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Their last encounter drew criticism after Trump sided with Putin against American intelligence agencies over 2016 election meddling.


MOSCOW — President Donald Trump will meet one-on-one with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at the G-20 on Saturday, according to the Kremlin.

They will hold discussions in private at the summit in Buenos Aires before being joined by officials, Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told the TASS state news agency late Wednesday.


An exact time has not been agreed, Ushakov said, although Interfax reported it would take place at around noon local time (10 a.m. ET), citing unidentified sources.

Trump already has much to discuss with global leaders in the Argentinian capital, and will have a working dinner with Chinese President Xi Jinping Saturday night.

His last encounter with Putin drew international criticism in July after he chose to side with the Russian president against American intelligence agencies over whether Moscow meddled in the 2016 election.

The latest meeting comes after Russian forces sparked an international crisis by attacking and seizing three Ukrainian vessels that were trying to pass through the Kerch Strait, a narrow artery that connects the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov.

Eleven Russian vessels surrounded Ukraine's two light military ships and one tugboat, ramming them before eventually opening fire on Sunday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko told NBC News.

Poroshenko insists his country is under "extremely serious" threat of a land invasion, and that's why he had to declare martial law for 30 days in regions adjacent to Russia.


Nikki Haley, the outgoing U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo joined other Western leaders in immediately pointing the finger of blame at the Kremlin and Putin.

However, Trump said Monday: "We don't like what's happening either way."

During the talks, Putin and Trump are expected to discuss disarmament, global anti-terrorism and future bilateral relations, Ushakov told TASS.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov echoed that on Thursday, telling reporters: "Bilateral relations-connected issues will come first. We should give thought to how to start discussing bilateral relations, strategic security and disarmament, and regional conflicts."

Elena Holodny reported from Moscow, and Alastair Jamieson from London.

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