Putin, Trump to hold talks in Helsinki on July 16

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump will hold a summit in Helsinki on July 16, the Kremlin press service said on Thursday.

The two leaders will discuss the current state and prospects of further development of Russian-US relations and also vital issues of the international agenda, it said.

The two countries had decided on the venue and date of the summit after US National Security Adviser, John Bolton, held talks with Putin and other leaders on Wednesday during his Moscow visit to lay the groundwork for the summit. However, they did not disclose when and where the summit is going to be held.

In Helsinki, Putin and Trump are expected to discuss strategic stability, the fight against international terrorism, regional matters including conflict situations across the globe, and bilateral relations.

Contacts between Moscow and Washington on the preparation of the talks intensified in mid-June and Trump expressed hope he could meet Putin soon.

The proposed summit has caused concern among major European allies of the US because of a new American doctrine which says there are ‘no friends, only enemies’.

When Putin received Bolton in the Kremlin on Wednesday, he told him it is sad Russia-US ties are not in their finest state now because of the domestic political discord gripping America.

Putin hoped Bolton’s visit to Moscow would be a step towards restoring ties with Washington. Russia has never sought confrontation, he said.

Putin suggested discussing what both sides could do to mend full-fledged relations based on equality and respect for each other’s interests.

Bolton noted that even when Russia and the US had serious differences, the two leaders and their advisers met and this laid the groundwork for ensuring global stability.