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Trump and Putin Explore Meeting on Sidelines of Asia Summit

Just this week, there has been a stream of revelations about Russia flooding American social media with propaganda and the first charges brought in an investigation about possible collusion with Russia during the campaign. One campaign foreign policy adviser, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. about trying to organize a meeting with senior Russian officials.

In addition to domestic matters, Washington and Moscow have traded barbed remarks over North Korea, Syria and nuclear arms proliferation.

Mr. Trump confirmed the possibility of a meeting, telling Fox News late Thursday that Mr. Putin could be helpful on North Korea and Syria, and that the two should discuss Ukraine.

Their first encounter, during a summit of Western leaders, fueled speculation about Mr. Trump’s seeming soft spot for his Russian counterpart.

The official meeting stretched for more than two hours, and Mr. Trump said he had asked Mr. Putin twice about any Russian role in the American presidential election.

Mr. Putin denied involvement, and the two men agreed to move beyond the dispute in the interest of finding common ground on other matters, including a limited cease-fire in Syria.

Later, at dinner, Mr. Trump also strolled over and talked to Mr. Putin at length with no aides present, considered a stunning breach of diplomatic practice.

The Kremlin has placed its hopes for the lifting of damaging economic sanctions on the two men developing good personal chemistry. However, this strategy has so far proved misplaced, as Congress passed legislation not only imposing the sanctions for election meddling but limiting Mr. Trump’s freedom to remove them.

Source: NYT > World

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