Putin says he wanted Trump to win in 2016, didn't interfere

Cheryl Sanders
July 18, 2018

After emerging from the tete-a-tete with the former KGB agent, who was trained in psychological manipulation and has two decades of experience negotiating with American presidents, Trump appeared to discount the findings of his own intelligence agencies about Russia's behavior.

Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Dan Coats testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 13, 2018.

U.S. President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Monday opened summit in Helsinki.

Trump came under fire for his performance in the press conference, with critics on both sides of the political aisle slamming his handling of questions about alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 USA presidential election.

Donald Trump has called the European Union a "foe" of America, as he departed from the United Kingdom ahead of a summit with Vladimir Putin.

Mr Putin arrived minutes earlier at the palace in Helsinki for the summit, which consists of a one-on-one meeting and a larger working lunch, and will conclude with a joint news conference. "The damage inflicted by President Trump's naiveté, egotism, false equivalence and sympathy for autocrats is hard to calculate".

Trump has made evasive comments on whether Washington might recognise Russia's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

But after being asked about that by his interviewer, Trump said "certainly I'll be asking about it" although extradition is highly unlikely.

Putin has repeatedly denied any knowledge of interference in the USA election.

"Russia is a foe in certain respects", he told CBS News. She added that Trump also said: "Don't walk away".

Mr Trump said the U.S. has "a lot of foes" and named the bloc as one of them.

Universally sympathetic to Trump, they described the American as hobbled by domestic political challenges - a problem that Putin doesn't face after 18 years of stifling opposition.

Putin is also chronically late for official events in Moscow, often because he lets preceding meetings run longer than expected.

Later in an interview with Fox News's Chris Wallace, Putin said "we don't have anything on [Trump]".

In a weekend interview with CBS News, Trump admitted that Russian Federation remains a foe, but he put Moscow on a par with China and the European Union as economic and diplomatic rivals.

"I go in with very low expectations".

On a related note, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will accompany the US President and will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and hold discussions on a range of issues on the US-Russian agenda.

"The world wants to see us getting along, we are the two great nuclear powers, we have 90 per cent of the nuclear (weapons), that's not a good thing it's a bad thing".

After sitting down with Putin, Trump said relations had warmed - and Putin agreed.

After the summit, Huntsman's daughter Abby - a Fox News host - was less charitable about the president's diplomatic efforts.

Other reports by iNewsToday