International News

The Latest: ‘Don’t meddle’ in election, Trump jokes to Putin

President Donald Trump, right, shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan, Friday, June 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

OSAKA, Japan — 2:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump says he’ll discuss trade and disarmament issues with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The two are meeting Friday on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Osaka, Japan. It’s their first meeting since a federal investigation in the United States documented extensive evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. It’s also their first time face-to-face since a Helsinki summit last July in which Trump refused to side with U.S. intelligence agencies over his Russian counterpart.

Putin has denied meddling in the election.

Trump jokingly said to Putin: “Don’t meddle in the election,” after a reporter asked if he will deliver that warning to Putin about the 2020 U.S. election.

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11:00 a. m.

President Donald Trump says German Chancellor Angela Merkel is a “fantastic person” and he’s “glad to have her as a friend.”

Trump commented Friday as he and Merkel met on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Japan. Merkel said last year that she won’t seek a fifth term as chancellor and Trump has complained outside of her presence that Germany is taking advantage of the U.S. on support for NATO.

The president says he and Merkel “have many things to talk about” but he didn’t indicate whether he’d raise the NATO issue.

Merkel said she wants to discuss Iran, counterterrorism and West Africa.

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10 a.m.

President Donald Trump says he and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi have become “great friends” and the two countries “have never been closer.”

The two heads of state met Friday in Osaka, Japan, on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit.

The president has complained about trade with India and says it will be among the issues they discuss. Modi said he wants to discuss Iran, 5G communications networks, bilateral relations and defense relations. The prime minister also thanked Trump for expressing his “love toward India” in a letter recently delivered by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Trump and Modi met separately following a three-way meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

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9:45 a.m.

President Donald Trump is meeting jointly with the leaders of India and Japan.

The three leaders did a group fist bump as they posed for a photo Friday’s meeting on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Osaka, Japan.

Trump says it’s a “great honor” to be at the meeting and congratulated Modi on his recent re-election.

Despite his recent complaints about India and Japan, Trump forecast a “positive” discussion with his counterparts.

Abe says India, the U.S., and Japan are the “foundation of the peace and prosperity in the region.”

Modi says their countries support democracy.

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7:45 p.m.

President Donald Trump is opening his participation in the Group of 20 summit by meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the summit host.

Trump recalled Friday that he’d been in Japan last month, joking that “we just left Japan and now I’m back.”

He recalled presenting an award to the winner of a sumo wrestling champion during the May visit and claimed “everybody’s talking about it all over the world.”

Trump says he and Abe will discuss trade, military and other issues during their meeting on the sidelines of the summit, which is being held in Osaka, Japan.

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4:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump is under pressure to take a firm stand against election interference Friday when he holds his first meeting with Russia’s Vladimir Putin since the special counsel found extensive evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.

U.S. officials are on high alert for more interference next year.

Trump said in advance he expected a “very good conversation” with Putin but told reporters that “what I say to him is none of your business.”

His aides have grown worried that Trump could use the meeting to once again attack Robert Mueller’s probe on the world stage, particularly since the special counsel now has a date to testify before Congress next month.

AP

June 28, 2019

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