Trump says meeting with Putin 'even better' than with NATO

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US President Donald Trump shakes hand with Russian President Vladimir Putin

Questioning Trump's stance on Russian Federation, he asserted, "What happened to the strong words and the strength of Ronald Reagan when he stood there at the Berlin Wall and said "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall"?"

Trump drew outrage back home from Democrats and Republicans alike for refusing at the Helsinki summit to accept the conclusion of US intelligence and law enforcement agencies that Russian Federation meddled in a the 2016 election to help him win.

Following the press conference, Netanyahu released a statement thanking the two leaders for their commitment to Israel's security and stating that he "very much appreciates the security coordination between Israel and Russian Federation and the clear position expressed by President Putin regarding the need to uphold the 1974 Separation of Forces Agreement between Israel and Syria".

While the US leader went home to widespread criticism after their Monday meeting, the Russian president came home to universal praise in Moscow - even though there were no major breakthroughs.

"While I had a great meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, raising vast amounts of money, I had an even better meeting with Vladimir Putin of Russian Federation".

Trump has always been at odds with his own intelligence community, largely clashing over a report released by USA intelligence officials concluding that Putin ordered "an influence campaign" in 2016 aimed at helping the Trump campaign and harming his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.

The only tangible sign of progress was Putin's gift of a World Cup soccer ball to Trump. I will say this: "I don't see any reason why it would be", Trump said.

Finland Trump Putin Summit
Russian president Vladimir Putin gives US president Donald Trump a football

The statement from Dan Coats, the Director of National Intelligence, did not directly reference Trump's comments at a news conference alongside Putin in Helsinki.

Referring to the Skripal case, Mr Putin said: "We would like to get at least some sort of a document, evidence about it". I have President Putin.

Trump has been widely criticized, by both Democratic and GOP leaders, for the meeting with Putin and for his remarks during the press conference downplaying Russian interference.

Trump's openness to the symbolic offer appeared to cede the high ground to Putin.

He made it clear that, in return, Russian Federation would want similar access to people in the United States it suspects of criminal activity. To Russia hawks, even consideration of the proposal pointed to the success of Putin's efforts to shake the foundations of American democracy.

"You're the president of the United States". Zeke Miller has reported on government and politics in Washington since 2011. Putin told Fox News commentator Chris Wallace. It showcases AP's overall coverage of the event.

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