Tuesday 22 August 2017

Russia describes Donald Trump talks as 'very constructive'

Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump sit down together at the G20 summit (AP)
Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump sit down together at the G20 summit (AP)
Donald Trump shakes hands with Vladimir Putin during the G20 summit in Hamburg (German government/AP)

President Donald Trump has accepted Russian president Vladimir Putin's assurances that Moscow did not meddle in the 2016 US presidential election, the Kremlin's foreign minister said.

Sergey Lavrov made the claim to reporters following Mr Trump and Mr Putin's lengthy meeting on the sidelines of an international summit in Germany.

That account appears at odds with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's description of the meeting.

Mr Tillerson said the president was "rightly focused on how do we move forward from what may be simply an intractable disagreement at this point".

US intelligence officials have blamed Russia for election hacking and other efforts to influence the election to help Mr Trump win.

Mr Lavrov said the Russian military police will monitor a ceasefire in southwestern Syria, after a Russia-US deal.

He described the lengthy talks as "very constructive" and said they touched on cybersecurity, Ukraine, North Korea and other issues.

Under the ceasefire deal Mr Lavrov says was brokered by Russia, the US and Jordan, Moscow and Washington will ensure the cessation of hostilities and humanitarian access.

A monitoring centre will be set up in Jordan, and the Russian military police will oversee its implementation.

AP

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