President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin are planning to meet around the time of Trump’s trip to the UK and the NATO summit in mid-July, according to two diplomatic sources familiar with the matter.
One diplomatic official told cnn that the Trump administration wants the meeting in Washington but Moscow has insisted on neutral ground. The official added that Vienna is the likely location.
No official announcements have been made.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Thursday that White House national security adviser John Bolton plans to visit Moscow. The timing of the visit wasn’t immediately clear.
In a conference call with reporters, Peskov said the Kremlin was aware of Bolton’s plans.
As far as we know, such a trip will take place, Peskov said. "So far that’s all we can say."
A spokesman for the National Security Council declined to comment both on the President’s plans for the meeting and also Bolton’s travel plans.
cnn reported last week that Moscow and Washington are "exploring" the possibility of a meeting between the two leaders and that Bolton has taken the reins when it comes to dealing with Moscow.
Speaking in London, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed the potential meeting, calling dialog between the two leaders "important" and adding that a meeting "is not in any way contradicting NATO policies."
NATO is in favor of dialog, and if you want dialog, you have to speak to the political leaders, Stoltenberg said.