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White House Says No Formal Trump-Putin Meeting

President Donald Trump gives a press conference in Beijing (Artem Ivanov / TASS)

The U.S. White House press secretary on Friday poured cold water on the prospects of a second formal meeting between President Donald Trump and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

Kremlin aides and Trump himself suggested the high-level talks would take place in Vietnam this week, and Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier that Putin was ready to meet his U.S. counterpart.

On Friday, Bloomberg’s White House reporter cited spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders as saying that Trump will not be meeting Putin.

“In terms of a scheduled formal meeting, there’s not one on the calendar and we don’t anticipate that there will be one,” Sanders said onboard Air Force One.

“Are they going to bump into each other and say hello? Certainly possible and likely,” she added.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was later cited by the Interfax news agency as saying that “there’s no clarity yet” on the prospects of a possible meeting. 

Putin’s foreign policy aide Yury Ushakov said Thursday that the two leaders were due to hold talks on the first day of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Vietnam.

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