Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin meet for summit in Helsinki

See Trump and Putin give opening remarks

Accepting that the relation between United States and Russian Federation is undergoing its lowest point, Trump assured that the bilateral meet in Helsinki has done a world of good for both the nations.

The Russian president spoke first, hailing the talks "rather useful and successful" in addressing issues they discussed, including nuclear weapons and alleged Russian meddling in the United States election.

Trump was joined at the luncheon by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman and other top aides.

Trump also failed to mention Syria and Ukraine, two topics he said on Friday that he meant to discuss with Putin. He called on Moscow and Washington to warm a period of frosty relations, largely because of the sizes of their nuclear arsenals. The Cold War has ended a long time ago, the situation in the world has drastically changed.

In Trump's statement, he recognised the "disagreements between our countries" and spoke of the "consequences" when diplomacy had failed.

Trump then threw the ball to his wife Melania, who was sat in the crowd watching the press conference.

For the next hour-and-a-half, Trump and Putin are scheduled to hold one-on-one discussions, with only interpreters at their side.

Trump had also issued a series of tweets as he headed for Finland, saying no matter how well he does at the summit with Putin he would "return to criticism that it wasn't good enough".

US President Donald Trump sat down with Vladimir Putin for a long-awaited summit on Monday saying he wanted good relations with Russian Federation, after blaming Washington's own past "foolishness and stupidity" for the countries' hostile ties.

"I think that getting along with Russian Federation is a good thing, but it's possible we won't", Trump said.

"The experience I had in communicating with the U.S. president says that although his actions are often subject to criticism, particularly on the global stage and in the field of economics, nevertheless the experience tells me that he is a serious-minded person capable of listening and responding to the arguments presented by the other side".

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He later added: "Cooperation between our countries have the potential to save hundreds of thousands of lives".

The Russian Foreign Ministry "liked" the president's tweet, in which Mr. Trump blamed *the U.S.* for poor U.S. -Russia relations, and faulted *the investigation* into the Russian cyberattack on the U.S. rather than the Russian cyberattack itself.

He said before the start of the expanded meeting that the summit was off to a "very, very good start".

John Brennan, the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, on Monday asked what President Donald Trump was "hiding" by meeting alone with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland. "We spent a great deal of time talking about it".

"Putin feels strongly about the issue and has an interesting idea".

But to Trump's critics, the friendly words had already been overshadowed by an extraordinary denunciation of his own country's prior policies, which Trump tweeted out hours before the summit.

"Our relationship with Russian Federation has NEVER been worse", Trump tweeted Monday morning, blaming "many years of USA foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!" They'll conclude the summit by taking questions at a joint news conference.

Even before Trump and Putin sat down Monday, Russia's government signaled that the two leaders were on the same page.

"Military, missiles, China our mutual friend president Xi".

Mr. Trump added: "Frankly, we have not been getting along for the last number of years". And I really think the world wants to see us get along.

Trump's foes at home have been scathing about his apparent refusal to criticise Putin.

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