Sunday 20 August 2017

Trump says 'very positive things' in store for US and Russia after historic meeting with Putin

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Darlene Superville and Ken Thomas

Donald Trump has claimed there are "very positive things" in store for the US and Russia as he sat down with Vladimir Putin for a historic first meeting.

Seated next to the Russian president on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Germany, Mr Trump said it was "an honour" to be with Mr Putin.

As journalists were briefly allowed in to witness part of the meeting, the US president said that he and Mr Putin had already held "very, very good talks".

"We look forward to a lot of very positive things happening for Russia and the United States," Mr Trump said.

U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

He offered no details about what issues he and the Russian leader had discussed, describing them only as "various things".

Mr Putin was similarly vague, telling reporters through a translator that they were discussing international problems and bilateral issues.

But he described the fact they were meeting as a positive sign in itself.

"Phone conversation is never enough," Mr Putin said, adding that he hoped the meeting would "yield positive results".

With secretary of state Rex Tillerson at his side, Mr Trump sat in front of an American flag with his hands clasped together.

Mr Putin, slightly hunched in his chair, rubbed his fingers together as he listened to Mr Trump address reporters. His foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, sat nearby.

The highly anticipated meeting is the first between the pair, taking place under the shadow of US outrage about Russian election meddling and nagging questions about potential Trump campaign collusion.

The White House had said there was no set agenda for the session, although Mr Tillerson said the Syria war would be a key topic.

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