Vladimir Putin told Russian diplomats that he made a proposal to Donald Trump at their summit this week to hold a referendum to help resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine, but agreed not to disclose the plan publicly so the US president could consider it, according to two people who attended Putin's closed-door speech on Thursday.
Unbowed by swirling criticism of his Helsinki summit encounter with the Russian president, Mr Trump asked national security adviser John Bolton to invite Mr Putin, and "those discussions are already under way", according to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
Trump said if Russian President Vladimir Putin crossed the line, he would "be the worst enemy" he's ever had.
Amid the unrelenting criticism of Trump's performance inside the United States, several lawmakers wanted the interpreter of Trump in his one-on-one meeting with Putin to testify before Congress for what exactly the two leaders had said in Helsinki.
Butina's arrest Sunday added to the political turmoil in Washington over Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election and allegations that President Donald Trump's campaign collaborated with the Russians.
Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats gave a rare interview Thursday live at the Aspen Security Forum with NBC's Andrea Mitchell - and he may have infuriated President Donald Trump in the process.
To the surprise of many, the White House was reported to be reviewing the demand. In that statement, Coats restated the US intelligence assessment about Russian meddling and Moscow's "ongoing, pervasive efforts to undermine our democracy".
Konstantin Kosachev, head of the upper house of parliament's foreign affairs committee, said Thursday the idea sets a risky precedent that threats the "the whole idea of diplomacy", according to Russian news agencies.More news: British PM wins key Brexit vote despite ‘big’ rebellion..
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"I don't know what happened in that meeting", he said.
On Twitter Thursday, Trump called the summit "a great success" and cited Ukraine among the areas discussed, without providing details.
Earlier Mr Trump rejected a proposal by Mr Putin that Russian Federation be allowed to question United States citizens. "And that's the way it's going to be", Trump said. And as the days pass and Trump's comments about Monday's summit become more and more contradictory, Moscow appears to be quietly losing hope for a thaw in Russian-U.S. ties under Trump.
In a meeting at the Foreign Ministry with Russia's ambassadors to other countries, Putin warned them to "take to this into account" in dealing with the U.S. Photographs of the meeting first emerged from Russia's Tass news agency.
Putin doesn't blame Trump for that.
At the news conference with Putin, he was asked if he would denounce what happened in 2016 and warn Putin never to do it again, and he did not directly answer.
"Basically, they are the ones that are trying to undermine our basic values and divide with our allies", Coats said. He says with that pressure on him, why shouldn't the USA go forward and see what happens.