Prospects for Putin-Trump meeting at APEC summit unclear
MOSCOW/ BEIJING: Prospects for a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. counterpart Donald Trump at this week’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit were unclear after the Kremlin said a meeting was definite before saying it was just a possibility.
Putin and Trump, who had their first face-to-face meeting in July to discuss allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. elec- tion, are both planning to attend this week’s summit in the Vietnamese city of Danang.
The Kremlin, which wants to try to improve battered U.S.-Russia ties, says it has been trying to set up a meeting and Trump told Fox News before his Asia tour that he might meet Putin in Vietnam to talk about Syria, Ukraine and North Korea.
Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told Russian news agencies on Thursday that such a meeting would happen on Friday, but Dmitry Peskov, a Putin spokesman, rowed back on that later on Thursday after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said no decision on formal talks had yet been taken.
Tillerson, on a visit to Beijing with Trump, also questioned whether the two leaders would have enough to talk about to justify such a meeting.