Putin aide: Trump proposed summit at White House

Putin aide: Trump proposed summit at White House

President Trump and first lady Melania hosted the annual Easter Egg Roll on the south lawn at the White House early Monday.

On March 20, Trump called Putin to congratulate him on his re-election, and the U.S. leader told reporters afterwards that the two would "probably get together in the not-too-distant future".

Poisoning with a nervous agent Skripal and her daughter Yulia took place on March 4.

Last week, Russia announced it would expel 60 American diplomats and close the USA consulate in St. Petersburg - a tit-for-tat reaction to the US decision to order Russian diplomats out over the poisoning of an ex-Russian spy in Britain. The last time Putin visited 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. was in 2005 during George W. Bush's presidency.

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Trump specifically invited Putin to the White House during the call, Putin aide Yuri Ushakov told Russian news agencies Monday.

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An invitation to White House would be endorsement dreamed by Putin, who maintains a close relationship with Trump but of confrontation with rest of American diplomatic apparatus. "Here he congratulates Putin on his so-called election, he does not protest or even mention the Salisbury poisoning, and he invites Putin to come".

An NHK reporter says that Putin will likely continue to seek talks with Trump in order to prevent bilateral ties from deteriorating further.

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"[The] symbolism of Putin standing in the East Room with the President at a news conference would be a major goal for the Russian leader", he said. Trump defended his decision on Twitter, saying President Barack Obama did the same in 2012.

Former government officials also fear that when in direct contact with Mr Putin, Mr Trump is reluctant to raise hard issues.

Some Republican lawmakers criticized Trump for making the congratulatory call to Putin. When Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met with Trump in the White House in May 2017, Trump allegedly shared Israeli intelligence with him.

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