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    US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin shake hands as they hold a joint news conference after their meeting in Helsinki, Finland July 16, 2018

    LIVE UPDATES: Putin, Trump Hold First Ever One-on-One Summit in Helsinki

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    The heads of Russia and the US arrived in the Finnish capital of Helsinki earlier in Monday to discuss a wide range of issues in an attempt to mend bilateral relations.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump have finished a joint press conference at the presidential palace in Helsinki, following tete-a-tete talks that lasted for more than two hours.

    During the meeting between Trump and Putin, the top diplomats from the two countries Sergei Lavrov and Mike Pompeo held separate talks as well.

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    • 21:18

      UN Hopes Trump-Putin Summit to Promote Global Disarmament - Spokesman

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United Nations, while continuing to examine statements by Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin following their summit in Helsinki, is encouraged that the two leaders discussed the need for negotiations on reducing weapons stockpiles, UN spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters on Monday.

      "At this stage, we're just going to be reviewing what the two leaders agreed to, but obviously we would welcome any sort of cooperation that would lead to furthering the disarmament goals," Haq said.

       

    • 21:01

      Putin-Trump Meeting Proves Russia's International Authority Surged - Russian Lawmaker

      "The whole world understands that it's hard to do anything without Russia. The very fact of a meeting and dialogue is a vivid confirmation of it. Honor and praise to President Vladimir Putin for being able to strengthen Russia's authority on international arena so that, no matter how the Americans and the EU try to exist in confrontation with us, to pressure us with sanctions, they are still forced to seek ways of rapprochement with us, still have to come to Russia," Russian parliament's upper house's Defense and Security Committee chairman Viktor Bondarev told Sputnik on Monday.

      As the senator noted, the meetings of the presidents of the two nuclear superpowers are always not only the beginning of a new stage in bilateral relations but also an important geopolitical, global event.

      "Of course, this event is also historic, because this summit is the first full-scale meeting between Putin and Trump." Today, our relations with the United States are tense. Now, this understanding has finally become mutual," Bondarev said.

      In any case, a dialogue is always better than silence, the senator concluded.

       

    • 20:49

      Putin: Trump Views Crimea Rejoining Russia as Unlawful, for Moscow Matter Closed

      "President Trump's position on Crimea is well known and he continues to stick to it. He talks about the unlawfulness of Crimea's rejoining Russia. We have a different point of view. We believe that we have held a referendum [on Crimea's rejoining Russia] in strict compliance with the international law and the UN Charter. For us, for the Russian Federation the matter is closed," Putin stated.

      Meanwhile, in June, media reported that Trump had allegedly told G7 leaders during a summit in the Canadian region of Charlevoix held on June 8-9 that the Crimean Peninsula belonged to Russia as its residents spoke the Russian language.

       

    • 20:44

      Readiness of Putin, Trump to Address Problems Main Message of Helsinki Summit - Niinisto

      HELSINKI (Sputnik) - Readiness of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump to address various difficulties is the main message of the Helsinki summit that was held earlier in the day, Finland's President Sauli Niinisto said Monday.

      "The main message from Helsinki is that these two leaders are prepared to continue the discussion on several different difficult issues ... We all have been pointing out that dialogue is needed," Niinisto said.

      The Finnish leader expressed his hope that the dialogue would continue.

       

    • 20:43

      Finnish President Says Discussed Nord Stream 2 Implementation with Trump

      HELSINKI (Sputnik) - Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said Monday he discussed with US President Donald Trump the implementation of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline construction project.

      "We talked about Nord Stream 2. I mentioned the long-lasting, good relations between Europe and the United States of America," Niinisto said.

      Niinisto and Trump met on Monday on the sidelines of the Russia-US summit in the Finnish capital of Helsinki.

    • 20:23

      Netanyahu Praises Russian, US Leaders Commitment to Ensuring Israel's Security

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed on Monday the statements made by the Russian and US leaders at the summit in Helsinki about their commitment to safeguarding Israel's security interests.

      "Netanyahu welcomes the deep commitment of the United States and President Trump to ensuring Israel's security," the prime minister's office said in a statement.

      "Netanyahu also highly appreciates the coordination with Russia on security issues and the position clearly expressed by President Putin on the need to implement the 1974 agreements on disengagement between Israel and Syria," the statement said.

       

    • 20:14

      Trump Hopes US Does 'As Good a Job' as Russia in Organizing 2026 FIFA World Cup

      "That's right, thank you very much. We do host it [the 2026 FIFA World Cup]. We hope we do as good a job. That's very nice. That will go to my son Barron," Trump said after receiving the official match ball of the 2018 FIFA World Cup from Putin at their joint press conference.

      On Sunday, Trump praised a "truly great" FIFA World Cup in Russia via his official Twitter account calling it "one of the best ever."

      The 2026 FIFA World Cup will be jointly hosted by the United States, Canada and Mexico and is set to become the first FIFA World Cup in history to be held in three countries at the same time.

       

    • 20:02

      Trump: Both Moscow, Washington Responsible for Deterioration of Bilateral Relations

      "I hold both countries responsible [for the deterioration of relations]. I think, the United States has been foolish. We have all been foolish, we should have had this dialogue a long time ago, a long time frankly before I got to office ... We have both made some mistakes. I think the [Russia] probe is a disaster for our countries, I think it has kept us apart, separated. There was no collusion at all," Trump said at a press conference following his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

      He indicated that after the Helsinki summit, the United States had taken a step forward with Russia.

      "We are getting together, and we have a chance to do some great things, whether its nuclear proliferation in terms of stopping it," Trump added.

    • 19:37

      Putin Apologizes to Helsinki Residents for Trouble Related to Hosting Summit With Trump

      HELSINKI (Sputnik) - Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday apologized to residents of Helsinki for any inconvenience that the organization of his summit with US counterpart Donald Trump in the Finnish capital could have caused.

      "In conclusion, I would like to note that Finland as a host [to the summit] has much contributed to creating a working environment during [our] talks. We are grateful to the Finnish leadership, Finnish people, and Helsinki residents for what was done. We know that we had caused many inconveniences to Helsinki residents, and we apologize for them," Putin said.

      The summit, as any other big international event, was accompanied by tightened security measures, including enhanced security in the area near a hotel hosting the two delegations and the blocking of some roads.

       

    • 19:36

      Putin: Trump Raised Issue of 12 Russians Accused of Alleged Meddling in US Election

      "The president raised this issue before me as well. What can I say, we discussed this in general, but the only thing that I think about or can propose is that we have the 1999 Russia-US agreement on mutual assistance, and this treaty is active," Putin said after the meeting with Trump.

      Putin added that he was not familiar with the details of these allegations.

      "As for these 12 people allegedly working for our special services - I do not know anything about this yet, I still need to find out what is it about," Putin said.

       

       

    • 19:28

      Putin: Russia May Let US Officials Attend Questioning of Suspects in US Election Meddling

      The Russian president noted that there is an agreement on mutual assistance in criminal cases, which is "working effectively."

      "We can propose that your relevant commission headed by [special prosecutor Robert] Mueller - send us an official request within the framework of this agreement to conduct the questioning of those people whom he considers guilty of committing any crimes," Putin said at a joint news conference with Trump.

      "Our prosecutors and investigative bodies can conduct the questioning and send relevant materials to the United States," he added.

      Moreover, Putin continued, Russia can "make one more step forward: we can allow the official representatives of the United States, including this commission headed by Mr. Mueller, to be present at these questioning sessions."

       

    • 19:23

      Putin: Russia Ready to Prolong Gas Transit Deal With Ukraine If Judicial Dispute Settled

      Russia is ready to prolong the gas transit agreement with Ukraine if the countries' national energy giants settle the judicial dispute between them in the Stockholm Arbitration Court, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday after talks with his US counterpart Donald Trump in Helsinki.

      "Concerning the Nord Stream 2 [gas pipeline], Mr. President [Trump] expressed his concern over the possible end of transit through Ukraine. I assured Mr. President that Russia is ready to maintain this transit. Moreover, we are ready to prolong the transit contract, which expires next week, in case of settlement of the dispute between the [Gazprom and Naftogaz] companies in the Stockholm Arbitration Court," Putin said.

       

    • 19:14
      Security personnel removes a man from the premises before U.S. President Donald Trump and Russia's President Vladimir Putin hold a joint news conference, after their meeting in Helsinki, Finland, July 16, 2018

      WATCH: US Journo Is Dragged Out by Security for 'Protest' at Putin-Trump Presser

      Authorities have yet to comment on the incident, which took place just minutes before the Putin-Trump press conference kicked off.
      Read more
    • 19:10

      Russian FM Lavrov: Putin-Trump Talks 'Better Than Super'

      Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said talks between Russia President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump on Monday in the Finnish capital of Helsinki "were excellent."

    • 19:09

      Putin Says He Didn't Know Trump Was in Russia When He Came There as Businessman

      "Concerning any leverage. I heard about that, we allegedly gathered leverage when he [Trump] visited Moscow. When Trump arrived in Moscow, I did not even know that he was there. I respect President Trump as the head of the US state but when he paid a visit as a businessman, I did not even know that he was in Moscow," Putin said.

    • 18:50

      'The Ball is Now in Your Court' - Putin Gives Trump 2018 FIFA World Cup Ball

      Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) offers a ball of the 2018 football World Cup to US President Donald Trump during a joint press conference after a meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018
      © AFP 2018 / Yuri KADOBNOV
    • 18:49

      Trump: US Coordinates Closely With Israel on Syria, Creating Safety For It Paramount

      HELSINKI (Sputnik) - US President Donald Trump said Monday after the bilateral summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin that Washington was closely coordinating with Israel on Syria, considering the safety of the former paramount, and noted Russian readiness take steps in this regard.

      "We have worked with Israel long and hard for many years, many decades. I think we have never had any country any closer than we are. President Putin is also helping Israel, and we both work with [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu, and they [Russia] would like to do certain things with respect to Syria, having to do with the safety of Israel. So in that respect, we would absolutely like to work in order to help Israel, and Israel will be working with us, so both countries will work jointly," Trump said, asked whether he and Putin reached any specific agreement on Syria.

      "Creating safety for Israel is something that President Putin and I would like to see very much," he added.

       

    • 18:47

      Putin: I Wanted Trump to Win Because He Spoke About Normalization of Ties With Russia

    • 18:39

      Putin Asks to Present Facts of Alleged Russian Meddling in US Presidential Vote

      Putin expressed Russian readiness to study any concrete materials on the issue if they are provided. The president further said that only a court could decide whether Russia meddled in the US election or not, the decision couldn't be made by special services.

      "I think Russia is a democratic country. I hope you believe the same of your country, the United States. Is the United States a democratic country? If so, then the final decision on such arguments [about election interference] should be made by courts, not by special services," Putin said after a meeting with US President Donald Trump.The Russian president added that the case against Russia-based Concord Management and Consulting, a company indicted in February over support for a propaganda campaign, was falling apart in a US court.

      "We heard accusations of Concord. As far as I know, the company hired US lawyers. All accusations against it are falling apart in the US court. Look at what is happening in US courts, this is what you should be guided by, rather than rumors," Putin said.

       

    • 18:37

      Trump: Probe on Russian Interference in US Elections Ridiculous, Keeps Powerful Countries Apart

      HELSINKI (Sputnik) - US President Donald Trump said that during his Monday meeting with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki the Russian leader had strongly denied any Moscow involvement in the US presidential election.

      "I have a great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today. And what he did is an incredible offer. He offered to have people working on the case come and work with their investigators with respect to the 12 people. I think that's an incredible offer," Trump said.

       

    • 18:34

      Trump: Not Sure North Stream 2 Benefits Germany, US Intends to Compete With It

      "We'll have to be competing with the pipeline and I think we'll be doing it very successfully," Trump told reporters.

      The United States, which is seeking to promote its own gas companies on the European market, has repeatedly criticized the EU's reliance on Russian gas and threatened to impose sanctions on companies working under the Nord Stream 2 project.

    • 19:11

      Trump Says Putin Good Competitor, Never Called Him Rival

      "Actually I called him a competitor, and a good competitor he is," Trump said when asked about his previous statements about Putin being an adversary and a rival.

    • 18:29

      Trump: Cooperation With Russia Has Potential to Save Hundreds of Thousands of Lives

      "Constructive dialogue between the United States and Russia afford the opportunity to open new pathways to peace and stability within our world," Trump told reporters.

    • 18:25

      Trump: Relations With Russia Changed For Better With Summit in Helsinki

      US President Donald Trump said during a joint press conference on Monday that his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin is just the start of stronger dialogue between the United States and Russia.

      "We had direct, open, deeply productive dialogue. It went very well," Trump told reporters.

      "Constructive dialogue between the United States and Russia afford the opportunity to open new pathways to peace and stability within our world," Trump told reporters.

    • 18:24

      Putin Says He Reiterated During Talks With Trump That Russia Hasn't Meddled in US Elections, Not Planning to Ever Do So

      "President Trump once again touched upon the issue of the so-called Russian meddling in the US election process. I had to repeat what I have said many times, including during personal meetings with the president [Trump]: Russia has never interfered and is not going to meddle in the US internal affairs, including in the election process," Putin said.

    • 18:22

      Putin: Trump's Personal Involvement Played Serious Role in Progress in Peaceful Settlement of Korean Crisis

      "It is good that the gradual resolution of the Korean peninsula problem has begun. To a great extent, it has become possible because President Trump personally joined the settlement process, directing the dialogue toward cooperation rather than confrontation," Putin said in Helsinki after a meeting with Trump.

    • 18:21

      Putin Says Agreed With Trump to Set Up Joint High-Level Group to Unite Leaders of Russian, US Businesses

      "President Trump and I have agreed to set up a high-level group, which would bring together the leader of the Russian and US business. Entrepreneurs know better how to build mutually beneficial cooperation. Let them think about what can be done, make their proposals in that regard," Putin said after a meeting with Trump in Helsinki.Putin said that the two presidents focused on economy-related issues.

      "The business communities of both countries are definitely interested in cooperation," the Russian president said.

      Putin emphasized that the delegation from the United States was among the largest at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in May.

       

    • 18:20

      Putin: Russia Concerned Over US Withdrawal From Iranian Nuclear Deal

      "During the talks, we spoke directly about our concerns over US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA] for the settlement of the Iranian nuclear problem. The US side knows our position, it remains unchanged. I emphasize that thanks to the nuclear deal, Iran has become the most verifiable country in the world under the control of the IAEA, which effectively ensures the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program," Putin said after talks with Trump.

    • 18:19

      Putin: No Objective Basis in Russia-US Row

    • 18:17

      Putin: Russia, US Can Take Lead Over Resolving Syrian Crisis

      "As for Syria, reaching the goal of restoration of peace and accord in this country could be an example of successful collaboration. Undoubtedly, Russia and the United States could become leaders in this regard and work together on resolving the humanitarian crisis, helping displaced people return home," Putin said at a press conference.

    • 18:16

      Putin: Russia Ready to Cooperate With US on Terrorism Fight and Cybersecurity Issues

      "It is useful to make intelligence services' contacts systematic. I reminded US president of the proposal to recreate a working group on counterterrorism," Putin said after talks with US President Donald Trump in Helsinki.

    • 18:14

      Putin: Russia Handed Proposals on Strategic Stability to the US

      Russia has passed to the United States its proposals on cooperation in the area of strategic stability and the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), Russian President Vladimir Putin said after talks with US leader Donald Trump on Monday.

      "I think it's important that we talked about this, we need to develop a dialogue on the issues of strategic stability and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. We handed a note to our American colleagues with a number of concrete proposals on this issue," Putin said.

      The Russian president also stressed the need for further close cooperation between Moscow and Washington on the entire range of military-political and disarmament issues.

       

    • 18:13

      Putin: Talks Were Successful and Useful, Reflect Desire to Restore Trust

      "The talks with US President Mr. Donald Trump took place in a sincere and businesslike atmosphere. I consider them to be very successful and useful," Putin said after the meeting with his US counterpart.

    • 18:11
      U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin hold a joint news conference after their meeting in Helsinki, Finland, July 16, 2018

      WATCH Putin and Trump Hold Press Conference After Tete-a-Tete Talks in Helsinki

      Ahead of the talks, the US president announced that the sides would address a wide range of topics, including trade and nuclear issues.
      Read more
    • 18:09

      Journalist With Banner Saying 'Nuclear Ban Treaty' Dragged Out of Hall

    • 17:47

      Russian, US Goals to Resolve Syrian Conflict Peacefully Coincide - Russian Envoy for Syria

      "Goals are the same. The goals of stabilizing the situation and reaching a political settlement are goals pursued by us and the American side," Lavrentyev told reporters on the sidelines of the Russian-US summit in Helsinki.

    • 17:07

      Police Say Detain Some 20 Demonstrators in Helsinki Where Putin-Trump Summit Taking Place

      "The police has just apprehended demonstrators in Helsinki. The group intended to seize the Mannerheimintie street - one of the main routes in #Helsinki. Some twenty demonstrators were apprehended for causing disturbance. #police," Helsinki tweeted.

    • 16:38

      'Very Good Start' For Summit With Putin - Trump Says Following One-on-One Meeting

    • 16:22

      Putin-Trump One-on-One Meeting Has Ended, Lasted More Than Two Hours

      Initially, the protocol of the Russia-US summit in the Finnish capital of Helsinki allocated 1 hour and 30 minutes for the tete-a-tete talks.

      According to the schedule of the summit, further talks in the expanded format, will take 1 hour and 45 minutes.

       

    • 16:05

      US Lawmakers Call on Trump to Reject Putin's Demands on Syria

      "We, therefore, call on President Trump to reject any Russian demands with respect to Syria," Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Bob Menendez and Ranking Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Eliot Engel said in a statement.

      Trump must instead demand that Putin follow through on his obligations with regard to the Iranian presence in Syria and make sure Syrian President Assad Bashar commits to a political process that will end the conflict, the statement added.

    • 15:43

      Lavrov, Pompeo Meet on Sidelines of Russia-US Helsinki Summit - Russian Foreign Ministry

    • 15:26

      Putin & Trump Shake Hands During Summit In Helsinki

    • 15:25
      The motorcade and Kortezh limousine carrying the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin pass the Finnish Parliament in Helsinki, Finland July 16, 2018

      WATCH Putin Arrive in Russia-Made Limo at Summit With Trump

      Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin met for their first full-fledged summit in the Finnish capital, Helsinki, and the Russian president’s bulletproof limo has also been placed in the limelight.
      Read more
    • 14:32

      Putin: Time to Have Substantial Talks on Pressing Issues at Meeting With Trump

      "Now it is time to have substantial talks on our bilateral talks and various pressing issues on the international agenda. There are many of them to pay attention," Putin said at the beginning of talks with Trump.

      The US president responded by expressing the hope that the two countries would build "extraordinary relationship."

       

    • 14:16

      Trump: Getting Along With Russia 'Good Thing'

      "We have not been getting along very well for the last few years... But I think we will end up having extraordinary relationship ... Getting along with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing," Trump said.

    • 14:14

      Trump: We Have Lot of 'Big Things to Talk About,' From Trade to Missiles

      "Discussions on everything from trade to military, to missiles, to nuclear... We will talk a little bit about China, our mutual friend, President Xi [Jinping] ... We are the two great nuclear powers, we have 90 percent of the nuclear, and that's not a good thing, it's a bad think, and I think that hopefully we can do something about it," Trump said.

    • 14:12

      Trump Congratulates Putin on Organizing 'One of the Best World Cups Ever'

      "First of all, Mr President I'd like to congratulate you on a really great World Cup. One of the best ever from what everybody tells me and also for your team, itself, doing so well," Trump said.

      He added that had watched the semi-finals and the final, which were "spectacular," while the entire tournament was "beautifully" organized.

       

    • 14:11

      Trump, Putin Start Their First Full-Fledged Summit in Helsinki With Tete-a-Tete

      Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump have started their first full-fledged talks at the presidential palace in Helsinki with a tete-a-tete.

      The two leaders shook hands and posed for photographs.

      Putin and Trump are expected to hold a one-on-one meeting in the presence of interpreters first. Later on, they will be joined by the members of their delegations, including the US state secretary and Russian foreign minister, at a working lunch.

       

    • 13:59

      Trump Arrives at Presidential Palace in Helsinki for Talks With Putin

      The meeting was initially scheduled to start at 13:20 local time (10:20 GMT), but both presidents did not arrive at the venue in time. The Russian president landed in the Finnish capital almost one hour later than expected and has already arrived at the presidential palace. Trump's motorcade arrived there 15 minutes later.

    • 13:47
      U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Russia's President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, July 16, 2018

      WATCH Putin, Trump Meet in Helsinki During First Bilateral Summit

      The Helsinki summit is the first ever full-fledged meeting between Putin and Trump. Their previous encounters were brief talks on the sidelines of the G20 and APEC summits in 2017.
      Read more
    • 13:40

      Pompeo, Bolton to Be Present at Putin-Trump Summit in Helsinki

      US National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be present at the upcoming summit between the Russian and US leaders, Sputnik reported Monday.

      The US delegation also includes White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Fiona Hill, the deputy assistant to the president in the National Security Council.

       

    • 13:38

      Putin Arrives at Presidential Palace in Helsinki For Summit With Trump

    • 13:05

      Trump Holds Talks With Finnish President Niinisto Upon Arriving For Summit

    • 13:02

      Putin Lands in Helsinki Later Than Expected For Summit With Trump

    • 12:55

      Energy Cooperation Issues Likely to Be Discussed

      The issue of the energy cooperation may be of high priority during the talks, regarding Trump's opposition to Russia's Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project as well as Russia's recent decision to support the increase of oil supplies within OPEC that left Washington satisfied and Tehran puzzled.

    • 12:45

      INF Future, Denuclearization of Korean Peninsula Likely to Be in Agenda

      The agenda that hasn't been made public yet is likely to include the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear, the future of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) along with the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

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