President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin held their first official meeting as heads of state today on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, with Trump declaring “we look forward to a lot of very positive things happening for Russia, for the United States and for everybody concerned.”
The two delivered brief remarks to reporters in the midst of their closed-door meeting, without taking questions. “President Putin and I have been discussing various things, and I think it’s going very well. We’ve had some very, very good talks. We’re going to have a talk now, and obviously that will continue,” Trump said, adding “it’s an honor to be with you.”
Putin noted that he and Trump “spoke over the phone … several times before on very important bilateral and international issues,” but “phone conversation is never enough.”
“If we want to have a positive development through bilaterals and be able to resolve most acute international problems… definitely we need personal meetings,” Putin added. “And I’m delighted to be able to meet you personally, Mr. President. And I hope, as you have said, our meeting will yield positive results.”
“It’s an honor to be with you.”
President Trump meets with Vladimir Putin at G-20 Summit. pic.twitter.com/F9ZwOmAxYC
— CSPAN (@cspan) July 7, 2017
Reporters who were briefly allowed in the meeting room to take photos asked Trump if he raised the issue of Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential campaign, but Trump ignored the questions.
The White House pool report noted that as reporters left the room Trump leaned in and said something to Putin, and the Russian president chuckled in response.
Only Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, and translators attended the Trump-Putin meeting.
UPDATE 1 p.m. EST: The meeting that had been scheduled for 30-45 minutes ran for two hours and 16 minutes.
— Department of State (@StateDept) July 7, 2017