Vladimir Putin has everything to gain from his first summit on Monday with Donald Trump. "Glad-handing with Vladimir Putin on the heels of these indictments would be an insult to our democracy", Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader, said.
As President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May arrived at the lip of the stairs leading to their lecterns, the US President took his British counterpart's hand and helped her down the four short steps to the stage.
Trump has long downplayed Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 election and repeatedly referred to Mueller's investigation as a "witch hunt". "If President Trump is not prepared to hold Putin accountable, the summit in Helsinki should not move forward".
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US Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman has already asserted that Trump will need to "go in with eyes wide open" when he meets with Putin and make "a sober assessment of the root causes of our problems".
Rosenstein said he briefed Trump about the indictment before Friday's announcement and that the timing was determined by "the facts, the evidence, and the law". John McCain of Arizona, a frequent Trump critic and a Russian Federation hawk, called on the president to cancel the summit if he is "not prepared to hold Putin accountable". "You can only ask so many times", Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One after the meeting. "For example, the economic sphere, I think, could be discussed by the presidents", he said.
"Putin is not a good guy, he's evil, and so we've got to make sure we get out of this meeting that should have never happened in the first place without doing something that's not helpful", he said.
"There was a gap between the Trumpian-generated idea that there is some kind of crisis and the reality that this was one of the most substantial summits for years", one senior North Atlantic Treaty Organisation diplomatic source told Reuters.
Asked at the end of the press conference whether he would tell Putin to stay out of US elections, Trump responded simply: 'Yes'. But he has also seemed to suggest that there is not much he can do to push back against the Russian leader's denials. "American diplomats have already begun to say that the United Nations should be shut down because it's not needed.Trump also tries to destroy the WTO and isn't sure about necessity of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation".
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On Iran, Macron urged Trump in vain earlier this year not to pull out of an worldwide deal that eased sanctions against Iran in return for curbs on its nuclear programme.
"I read the 140-character messages", Macron said.
The 11-count indictment names the Russians defendants, alleging they began cyber-attacks in March 2016 on the email accounts of staff for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.
"Today we have common threats, common enemies", Lavrov said. Schiff said on CNN that Trump should "cut his losses on this disastrous trip to Europe" and return without engaging with the Russian leader.
In February, 13 Russians and three Russian companies were charged with interfering with the election.
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