Helsinki being considered for Trump-Putin meeting: report

Helsinki being considered for Trump-Putin meeting: report
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpCensus Bureau intends to wrap up count on Oct. 5 despite judge's order Top House Republican calls for probe of source of NYT Trump tax documents New Yorkers report receiving ballots with wrong name, voter addresses MORE appears likely to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin next month after his trips to Brussels and the United Kingdom, with Helsinki, Finland, serving as the potential venue, according to multiple reports.

Politico reported that while plans are still being finalized, Helsinki is now the frontrunner as the host location. The report cited White House sources, who indicated the venue would be a neutral location that would allow Putin to be back in Russia in time for the July 15 World Cup final in Moscow.

The meeting is expected to take place at the tail end of Trump’s trip to Europe next month. The president will be in Belgium for a NATO meeting from July 11-12, then in the United Kingdom on July 13.

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National Security Adviser John Bolton is in Russia this week to discuss the meeting between Trump and Putin, a spokesman for the national security council tweeted.

A potential meeting between Trump and Putin has reportedly been in the works for several weeks.

Despite his claims that no administration has been tougher on Russia than his own, Trump has drawn criticism since taking office for not speaking out more forcefully against Putin, particularly in the wake of the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia attempted to influence the 2016 presidential election in Trump's favor.

Earlier this month, Trump advocated for Russia to be readmitted to the Group of Seven (G-7). Russia was expelled from the group of then-eight global leaders in 2014 after its widely condemned annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

"If he were at that meeting, I could ask him (Putin) to do things that are good for the world, that are good for our country that are good for him,” Trump said, touting the need for Russia's readmission.

The idea did not gain traction with most G-7 members.