Trump and Putin to meet in July, Russian state media says

Between multiple reports detailing the insane behind-the-scenes drama of James Comey's firing by Donald Trump, Wednesday's endless news dump included meetings between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, State Secretary Rex Tillerson, and the president himself.

Mr Trump has said he has no ties to Russia and is not aware of any involvement by his aides in any Russian election interference.

"Does the Comey firing cast a shadow over your talks", a reporter asked him.

The White House said in a readout of their meeting that Trump "emphasised the need to work together to end the conflict in Syria, in particular, underscoring the need for Russian Federation to rein in the Assad regime, Iran, and Iranian proxies". "He was sacked? You are kidding!"

Sergei Lavrov, Russia's Foreign Minister announced this after his meeting with Trump in Washington Wednesday.

President Trump then took two questions about his decision to fire James Comey as Federal Bureau of Investigation director. Lavrov turned comic after his host, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, uttered a few words of welcome.

"Because he was not doing a good job", explained the President. Trump's firing of Comey throws into question the future of a counterintelligence investigation into Trump's campaign's possible connections to Russian Federation.

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"We do not announce personnel changes, if and when relevant decrees are signed by the president, we will inform you about it", Peskov told reporters.

The encounter was rendered especially significant because Trump's sacking of FBI Director James Comey on Wednesday has focused attention on the bureau's ongoing investigation into alleged ties between Russian Federation and some of Trump's associates.

The Russian diplomat had not visited Washington since 2013, a year before Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region and two years before it intervened militarily in Syria to help President Bashar Assad remain in power.

Tillerson's meeting with Lavrov is the second since Tillerson has been in office.

In case this isn't obvious, given Russia's recent misdeeds, we'd expect to see the White House taking steps to punish Russian Federation, not reward them with diplomatic niceties. Critical details need to be finalised, and the USA response has been cautious.

Mr Lavrov was conveying the plan to end the violence, after hashing out an agreement with Iran and Turkey last week.

Tillerson should have told Lavrov "we're pursuing an investigation and when the investigation is completed there will be consequences for what you did", Bolton said. Lavrov said the meeting mainly focused on ideas of de-escalation zones in Syria.

  • Adam Floyd