President Trump has reportedly invited Vladimir Putin to the White House for a visit, according to a statement from the Kremlin. Putin aide Yury Ushakov told reporters Monday that during a March 20 phone conversation, Trump “suggested that the first meeting could be held in Washington” between the two leaders. “If everything goes well, I hope that the American side would not refuse its proposal to discuss the possibility of organizing the summit talks.”
According to an Agence France-Presse reporter, a senior U.S. official did “not deny” that Trump “floated the idea of a White House summit,” noting that “no planning has begun as yet.” According to a TASS state media report, Ushakov told journalists that since the U.S. and Russia has expelled their respective diplomats from their countries, “there have been no specific discussions of a possible meeting.” He also said Russia “would like to believe that preparations for such a meeting will begin.”
The news follows reports Trump congratulated Putin on his re-election over the phone after his staff told him explicitly not to, as well as a suspected poisoning of an ex Russian spy on British soil and amid special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of alleged Trump campaign collusion with Russia in the 2016 presidential election. Read more at TASS.