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World Trump lands in Europe, says Putin 'easiest' of his meetings

00:45  11 july  2018
00:45  11 july  2018 Source:   msn.com

NYT: Trump told Putin some of his own aides are ‘stupid people’

  NYT: Trump told Putin some of his own aides are ‘stupid people’ President Trump dismissed some of his own aides during a phone call earlier this year with Russian President Vladimir Putin as "stupid people," The New York Times reported Monday. The Times, citing a source with direct knowledge of Trump's phone call in March, reported that the Russian president lamented that some White House officials tried to stop the conversation from even happening."Those are stupid people; you shouldn't listen to them," Trump responded, according to The Times.

Trump said Tuesday he "can't say right now" if Putin is a friend or foe, but called him a "competitor." He said that of the high-stakes meetings of his trip, " Putin may be the easiest of them all."

‘President Donald Trump says NATO benefits Europe more than the United States, as he prepares to meet with treaty allies in Brussels. He says , “I think Putin may be the easiest of them all.” Trump ’s tweets would likely set a combative tone for the upcoming meetings .

U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive aboard Air Force One ahead of the NATO Summit, at Brussels Military Airport in Melsbroek, Belgium July 10, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque © Thomson Reuters U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrive aboard Air Force One ahead of the NATO Summit, at Brussels Military Airport in Melsbroek, Belgium July 10, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque BRUSSELS (AP) — With Europe's wary eyes upon him, President Donald Trump launched a weeklong trip there on Tuesday with harsh criticism for NATO allies and predicted the "easiest" leg of his journey would be his scheduled sit-down with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

As he departed the White House for a four-nation European tour, Trump did little to reassure allies fretting over the risk of damage he could do to the 69-year-old trans-Atlantic mutual defense pact and his potential embrace of Putin during a summit in Helsinki.

Trump says Putin meeting 'may be the easiest of them all'

  Trump says Putin meeting 'may be the easiest of them all' President Donald Trump said his easiest meeting on his foreign trip to Europe this week may be his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump spoke to reporters before leaving for the NATO summit in Brussels, the first stop on his trip. He plans to travel to the United Kingdom and meet with Prime Minister Theresa May. Trump will hold his first standalone summit with Putin in Helsinki, Finland, next Monday. "I have NATO. I have the UK, which is in somewhat turmoil. And I have Putin. Frankly, Putin may be the easiest of them all," Trump said Tuesday.

President Donald Trump predicted Tuesday that his upcoming summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin “may be the easiest ” of the meetings he has scheduled for his weeklong trip to Europe .

Donald Trump hasn’t even arrived in Europe , but he’s already making life difficult for Prime Minister Theresa May. He said the U.K. was in “somewhat turmoil” and thinks meeting Vladimir Putin -- her geopolitical enemy -- will be the easiest part of his trip.

Trump said Tuesday he "can't say right now" if Putin is a friend or foe, but called him a "competitor." The U.S. intelligence community has concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to boost Trump's candidacy, and warns of further attempts at interference both in the 2018 midterms and in European elections.

Trump arrived in Brussels on the eve of the NATO summit after repeated attacks on the pact. He told reporters in Washington before leaving that "Frankly it helps them a lot more than it helps us" and then later tweeted from Air Force One that he may demand reimbursements from the European member nations.

Trump has been pressing NATO countries to fulfill their goal of spending that 2 percent of their gross domestic products on defense by 2024. During his presidential campaign, he suggested he might only come to the defense of NATO nations that fulfilled their obligation. And a year ago, during his first visit to its Belgium headquarters, Trump initially declined to explicitly support the organization's defense agreement.

European Union president to Trump: 'Appreciate your allies, after all you don't have that many'

  European Union president to Trump: 'Appreciate your allies, after all you don't have that many'  European Union President Donald Tusk on Tuesday delivered a strongly worded statement directed at President Donald Trump amid his ongoing criticism of NATO: "Appreciate your allies. After

Trump flew to Europe Tuesday for a week-long trip. At its end, he will meet with Putin in Helskinki, Finland. Trump will spend Wednesday at the summit, the first stop of his four-nation European tour. He says , “I think Putin may be the easiest of them all.”

Europe . Mr. Trump , this official said , told Mr. Putin that he welcomed the shift in tone. But Mr. Trump reminded Mr. Putin that his administration was spending 0 billion to upgrade the American military, and that the United States would win any arms race between the two.

Trump, who landed in Belgium during the middle of the soccer-mad nation's World Cup semifinals match, will later head to London, where Prime Minister Theresa May's government is in turmoil over her plans for exiting the European Union.

European Council President Donald Tusk said on Tuesday in a message to Trump that "it is always worth knowing who is your strategic friend and who is your strategic problem." Tusk recalled that the Europeans are spending more than Russia and as much as China on defense. NATO estimates that 15 members, or just over half, will meet the benchmark by 2024 based on current trends.

"Getting ready to leave for Europe. First meeting — NATO. The U.S. is spending many times more than any other country in order to protect them," Trump tweeted Tuesday morning, adding: "Not fair to the U.S. taxpayer. On top of that we lose $151 Billion on Trade with the European Union. Charge us big Tariffs (& Barriers)!"

Flake: Trump’s flattery of Putin ‘simply bizarre,’ ‘unconscionable’

  Flake: Trump’s flattery of Putin ‘simply bizarre,’ ‘unconscionable’ GOP Sen. Jeff Flake (Ariz.) lashed out at President Trump's warmer stance toward Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday and questioned why the two are meeting one-on-one next week."Singing his praises for no good reason sends a terrifying message to our allies. Flattering such a man is simply bizarre. That the admiration comes from an American president, well, that is unconscionable," Flake said during a Senate floor speech. Trump and Putin are expected to meet Monday in Helsinki. Flake questioned why the two were meeting without staff noting that the "world seems to be hanging in the balance.

As he departed the White House Tuesday en route to Europe for a summit with fellow NATO leaders, a meeting with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May and, later, Russian President Vladimir Putin , President Donald Trump said that his meeting with Putin “may be the easiest of them all.”

Europe . Subscribe. Mr. Huntsman said Mr. Trump and his administration were approaching the Putin meeting “with our eyes wide open” — the same phrase they used in the run-up to Mr. Trump ’s summit meeting in Singapore with Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader.

On Monday he'd tweeted the situation was "not fair, nor is it acceptable," and insisted that NATO benefits Europe "far more than it does the U.S."

He added: "NATO countries must pay MORE, the United States must pay LESS. Very Unfair!"

Trump, who has compared the sentiment that underpinned the Brexit vote to leave the EU to his own election, will be making his maiden presidential trip to Britain at a fraught time for May. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Brexit Secretary David Davis resigned within hours of each other in protest of her plan. Trump said might meet with Johnson in the UK despite his resignation.

Trump's visit is expected to attract large protests in London and elsewhere in Britain.

Trump's weeklong trip to Europe will continue with a stop in Scotland before ending with a sit-down in Helsinki with Putin.

He said that of the high-stakes meetings of his trip, "Putin may be the easiest of them all."

"I think that getting along with Russia, getting along with China, getting along with others is a good thing, not a bad thing," he added.

The meeting will be closely watched to see whether Trump will rebuke or embrace Putin, who has repeatedly denied the allegations of election meddling, in spite of evidence to the contrary.

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Colvin reported from Washington. AP writer Zeke Miller contributed from Washington.

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Follow Colvin and Lemire on Twitter at https://twitter.com/colvinj and https://twitter.com/JonLemire

Royalty, the pope, and now Trump - Putin makes everyone wait .
Russian President Vladimir Putin is famous for his tardiness at official talks, and was late for talks with U.S. President Donald Trump. Putin long has sought to meet with Trump, but the Russian leader was 35 minutes late to arrive at their closely watched summit in the Finnish capital.

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