Trump-Putin summit confirmed for July 16

Thursday, June 28, 2018

The summit between US president Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin will take place in Helsinki on July 16.

The synchronised announcement by the Kremlin and the White House comes a day after Mr Trump's national security adviser John Bolton held talks with Russian officials in Moscow to lay the groundwork for the meeting in the capital of Finland.

Mr Trump said on Wednesday that "getting along with Russia and with China and with everybody is a very good thing".

He added that the two sides would discuss Syria, Ukraine and "many other subjects".

The Russian leader had two brief meetings with Mr Trump on the sidelines of international summits last year, but plans for a full-fledged meeting have been held back amid US investigations into alleged collusion between Mr Trump's campaign and Russia.

Ahead of the announcement, Mr Trump repeated Russian denials of election interference, tweeting: "Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with Meddling in our Election!"

The US leader has continually parroted the Kremlin's denial of election interference, a move that has put him out of step with the findings of the US intelligence community and nearly all Democrats and Republicans in Congress, who say there is clear evidence of Russian efforts to influence the 2016 US presidential campaign.

Russia's deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov said foreign minister Sergey Lavrov is likely to meet with US secretary of state Mike Pompeo within the next two weeks as part of efforts to set the stage for the summit.

Mr Ryabkov said in remarks carried by Russian news agencies that Moscow has already made a proposal regarding the specifics of the meeting and is waiting for Washington's answer.