United States President Donald Trump is reportedly planning to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin during Trump’s visit to Europe next month.
Trump met with Putin twice during the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, last year.
According to Bloomberg, the president will either meet Putin before the NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, on July 11 or after the commander-in-chief’s visit to England on July 13, a source who wished to speak on condition of anonymity said.
Trump’s National Security adviser, John Bolton, reportedly also plans to visit Moscow next week to discuss preparations for the potential summit between the world leaders.
In April, the United States Treasury Department slapped fresh sanctions on members of Putin’s inner circle. Nonetheless, Trump floated the notion that Russia should “come back in[to]” the G8 summit before it became the G7 after Russia was removed four years ago for annexing Crimea.
“You know, whether you like it or not, and it may not be politically correct, but we have a world to run,” Trump reportedly said in remarks at the G7 Summit in Quebec, Canada, this month. “And in the G7, which used to be the G8, they threw Russia out. They should let Russia come back in because we should have Russia at the negotiating table.”
Trump has repeatedly stated there was “no collusion” between his campaign and Russia.
On Monday, former President Barack Obama’s intelligence chief, James Clapper, said he hoped special counsel Robert Mueller would wrap up his Russia investigation soon and tell the world if there was actual collusion between Moscow and Trump’s campaign.
“I think the overarching point here is that this whole issue has to come to a resolution,” Clapper reportedly said. “At some point special counsel Mueller and his team I hope will wrap up the investigation and clear the air one way or the other whether or not there was collusion with the Russians.”
He reportedly added, “This is a cloud that is hanging over the country and certainly hanging over this presidency. And I do hope that happens, and soon.”