Moscow: Crimea not on Trump-Putin agenda at summit
A Kremlin spokesman on Monday told reporters that Crimea will not be on the agenda when President Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Finland on July 16, Reuters reported.
Trump on Friday implied the U.S. could discuss recognizing Russia’s annexation of Crimea during the summit in Helsinki, but Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Crimea is off the table.
Trump and Putin are scheduled to meet after Trump attends a summit with NATO allies and makes a state visit to the United Kingdom.
“I’ll talk to [Putin] about everything,” Trump said on Friday, adding the agenda will include the war in Syria and Russia’s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
“We’re going to be talking about Ukraine, we’re going to be talking about Syria, we’ll be talking about elections, and we don’t want anybody tampering with elections,” Trump said to reporters on Air Force One.
Russia in 2014 annexed Crimea from Ukraine, eliciting widespread international condemnation. The U.S. and European Union enacted sanctions against Russia for its role in the annexation and Russia was removed from the Group of Eight, now Group of Seven (G-7), over the move.
Trump called for Russia to be readmitted to the group just before departing for a G-7 summit in June.
Peskov said Putin may be willing to compromise on other issues but not Crimea, Reuters reported.
Trump has previously blamed the annexation of Crimea on former President Obama.
“President Obama allowed that to happen which is very unfortunate,” Trump said on Friday. “It was during President Obama’s term in office.”
White House national security adviser John Bolton on Sunday said he discussed Crimea with Putin during his June 27 visit to Moscow.
“President Putin was pretty clear with me about it and my response was we’re going to have to agree to disagree on Ukraine,” Bolton said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
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