Trump criticised for congratulating Putin on re-election
Mar 22 2018
The U.S. State Department endorsed the OSCE's preliminary findings, said spokeswoman Heather Nauert, and called Trump's call to Putin "protocol".
Putin was voted by 55.4 million people in the nation. She says opposition leaders were intimidated or jailed. "When I look at a Russian election, what I see is a lack of credibility in tallying the results, I'm always reminded of the elections they have in nearly every communist country, where whoever the dictator was of the moment, always got a huge percentage of the vote". She says the USA has every reason to believe that report is correct.
Another possible explanation is that Trump is digging in his heels because he sees any criticism of his approach to Russian Federation as bound up in the election meddling issue, that he has blasted as a hoax created to invalidate his shock White House victory.
The report comes as Trump faces intense criticism for congratulating Putin.
"I don't believe it came up on this specific call", White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said. "We don't get to dictate how other countries operate", Sanders said.
Trump said that he called Putin to congratulate him on winning his fourth term in office, and listed policy concerns that the two leaders meant to discuss in the future, including the "out of control" arms race. "So I think probably we'll be seeing President Putin in the not too distant future".
The leader of the UK Conservative Party's group in the European Parliament, MEP Ashley Fox, said Juncker's letter was "disgraceful" and "nauseating" in its "failure to mention Russia's responsibility" in the attack on Skripal and his daughter. Trump has not been highly critical of Russia in public, while maintaining there was no collusion between his presidential campaign and Russians.
"We had a very good call", Trump said, "and I suspect that we'll be meeting in the not-too-distant future to discuss the arms race, which is getting out of control".
The Kremlin said the conversation between the USA and Russian presidents was "constructive and business-like", adding that Russia hoped to "overcome problems" that had arisen between the two nations.
Mr Putin and Mr Trump agreed to instruct Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Mr Mike Pompeo, Mr Trump's Secretary of State pick, to make contact "as soon as possible" to discuss meeting logistics, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.
U.S. President Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin Tuesday discussed holding a possible summit as the American leader congratulated the Russian president on his re-election.
They also stressed the importance of joint efforts to limit an arms race and boost economic cooperation after a Russian spy attack row with Britain plunged relations with the West into a new crisis. Information on Syria and North Korea were also provided to the president in writing before the call, officials said. Russian Federation has repeatedly said it hoped for better ties with the US under Trump. In addition, the USA joined Britain, France and Germany in questioning Russia's alleged role in poisoning a former Russian spy with a military-grade nerve toxin in England.
An official statement by the Kremlin on Tuesday said Trump and Putin discussed the importance of working together on global terrorism, limiting nuclear arms and economic cooperation.