The White House confirmed Thursday that U.S. President Donald Trump and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will meet face-to-face for the first time next month on the sidelines of the G20 (Group of 20) summit in Hamburg, Germany.
The summit is scheduled for July 7 and 8.
U.S. National Security Adviser, General H.R.McMaster, told journalists at a White House briefing there is “no specific agenda” for the meeting.
One day earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters that he assumed the two men would meet at the G20, and said it was especially important for Putin and Trump to discuss the war in Syria, according to RadioFreeEurope.
Aircraft from both countries are still flying daily sorties in the skies of Syria, albeit not as allies.
On Thursday, Putin received former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, “who is visiting Russia to take part in the Primakov Readings, an international conference of top-rated political experts” presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov told TASS. “Putin and Kissinger have maintained warm personal relations over a number of years and they have meetings when an opportunity avails itself,” Peskov said.
Meanwhile, Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak is slated to return to Moscow at the end of July, according to a separate report by TASS.
Sergei Rogov, the Academic Director of the Moscow-based Institute for U.S. and Canada Studies made the announcement Thursday at the Primakov Readings conference. “His return is linked to a regular rotation of diplomats,” Rogov said, adding that the treatment given to Kislyak in the U.S. was “loutish beyond precedent.”
Kislyak has been mentioned in reports by some American media as having some involvement with members of the Trump campaign prior to, and after the election of U.S. President Donald Trump – contacts which are now under investigation by Congressional committees and a number of news organizations.