Trump sets expectations 'low' for Helsinki summit with Putin

Trump sets expectations 'low' for Helsinki summit with Putin

Trump sets expectations 'low' for Helsinki summit with Putin

A USA federal grand jury charged 12 Russian intelligence officers on Friday with hacking Democratic computer networks in 2016, in the most detailed United States accusation yet that Moscow meddled in the election to help Republican Trump.

Speaking to ABC's This Week, national security adviser John Bolton said: "The United States does not have an extradition process with Russian Federation so it's pretty hard to imagine how that would happen".

Trump has baffled his own advisers at times with his unabashed desire for strong ties with Putin, White House sources have said.

The president has repeatedly said the investigation into Russian election meddling is a "rigged witch hunt" that makes it hard for him to do substantive deals with Moscow.

It would be "pretty silly to demand something that (Trump) can't get legally", Bolton said, because "to demand something that isn't going to happen puts the president in a weak position".

But far from his prediction that the Putin meeting would be the "easiest" part of his swing through Europe, the summit comes freighted with new tensions, after 12 Russian military intelligence agents were indicted for hacking Democrats during the 2016 election.

But he told CBS that he was going into it with "low expectations". He declined to discuss his goals, but said such sessions are beneficial. "I believe that having a meeting with Chairman Kim was a good thing", he said of North Korea's supreme leader whom he met last month in Singapore.

Mr. Huntsman, who is in Helsinki for the Trump-Putin powwow, said Russia's takeover of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 is on the agenda. Now, you wouldn't think of the European Union, but they're a foe.

US President Donald Trump named Russian Federation, the European Union and China as "foes", in an interview aired on Sunday on the eve of his summit with Vladimir Putin.

The Helsinki summit comes amid a political fallout in often-contentious relations that nosedived over Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 and further eroded over allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 USA presidential elections. It doesn't mean anything.

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"Russia-U.S. ties aren't just at their lowest point since the end of the Cold War, they never were as bad as they are now", said Fyodor Lukyanov, who chairs the Council for Foreign and Defence Policies, an influential Moscow-based association of policy experts. "And this is what these two men, Trump and Putin, have in common - contempt for democracy, contempt for global agreements, contempt for human rights", Heidi Hautala, a member of the European Parliament from the Greens of Finland, told the rally.

"U.S. and Russian presidents could meet and sign an actual agreement, that would be great, but it doesn't seem like that is a priority for at least Trump for now", Salonius-Pasternak said.

The man, not yet identified, was spotted breaching a no-fly zone carrying a banner reading, "Trump: Well Below Par", as he flew just meters past the USA leader at his Turnberry resort in Ayrshire. More than anything else, he sees Monday's summit as an opportunity to develop good rapport with Trump and set the stage for regular high-level contacts. Unfortunately, no matter how well I do at the Summit, if I was given the great city of Moscow as retribution for all of the sins and evils committed by Russian Federation over the years, I would return to criticism that it wasn't good enough - that I should have gotten Saint Petersburg in addition!

Trump also writes: "Much of our news media is indeed the enemy of the people". Their first meeting came last July while both participated in an global summit and continued for more than two hours, well over the scheduled 30 minutes.

The summit, which comes at one of the most crucial junctures for the West since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union, has alarmed some North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies who fear Putin might seek a grand deal that undermines the US-led transatlantic alliance.

Trump has insisted on the meeting, saying it will be a "good thing" if sitting down with Russia's leader improves relations between the US and Russian Federation. Huntsman said the summit must go on because Russian engagement is needed to solve some global issues.

Trump also says he intends to pressure Putin over the rapid growth and modernisation of Russia's nuclear arsenal.

Trump has repeatedly said the investigation into suspected Russian interference in the 2016 United States election - which he casts as a "rigged witch hunt" - makes it hard for him to do substantive deals with Moscow.

"We have asked, and the Russians have agreed, that it will be basically unstructured".

"He has already said that he has asked Putin about meddling, Putin told him he didn't do it, and he believed him", Murphy said.

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