US Media Complain About Russian 'Access' to Trump-Lavrov Meeting

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's talks with Trump were already destined to be a closely watched affair, given the dire state of U.S. Lavrov called it a USA decision, echoing Putin, who said Russian Federation had nothing to do with Comey's dismissal. The conversations were intercepted by USA intelligence agencies. Lavrov called it a US decision, echoing Putin, who said Russian Federation had nothing to do with Comey's dismissal.

"We had a very, very good meeting with Mr. Lavrov, and I thought it was very good", Trump said.

While as a candidate Trump indicated he would seek warmer relations with Russia, tensions have mounted amid growing evidence of Russian interference in elections in the USA and Europe and Moscow's support for Bashar al-Assad's government in Syria.

"The Trump administration, and the president himself, and the secretary of state, I was persuaded of this once again today, are people of action", Lavrov said.

Russian Federation denies the allegations.

At issue is not just the fact that White House officials were so easily misled by the Russian envoy.

"Was he fired? You're kidding", Lavrov said sarcastically, feigning surprise as he started his day of meetings in Washington.

The US, along with some European allies, has imposed several rounds of economic sanctions on Russian Federation in response to what they called the annexation of Crimea and destabilising activities in eastern Ukraine.

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The Russian embassy in Washington tweeted a picture from the Lavrov meeting of Trump shaking hands with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak, a man at the centre of the controversy on Russian contacts with associates of Trump.

Lavrov said the allegations didn't arise during his meeting with Trump.

"We want to see the killing, the terrible killing, stopped in Syria as soon as possible and everyone is working towards that end", Trump told reporters.

Lavrov said that he hoped the United States would "make an active contribution" to securing the safe zones, especially in southern Syria near the borders with Israel and Jordan, where he said the U.S. may "initiate" the process.

"There's something odd, I've got to tell you, about this protection of this U.S. -Russia relationship from the get-go - from the campaign through the transition through the first four months of the administration", the president of the Council on Foreign Relations told CNBC's "Squawk Box".

Former U.S. National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was forced to resign for failing to disclose the content of his talks with Kislyak and then misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the conversations.

Russian Federation wants the elimination of those and election-related sanctions imposed by Obama. "Neither of us brought up this bacchanalia", Lavrov said.

Information for this article was contributed by Josh Lederman, Vivian Salama, Julie Pace and Vladimir Isachenkov of The Associated Press; by Margaret Talev, Stepan Kravchenko, Nick Wadhams, Katia Dmitrieva, Laura Curtis and Jennifer Epstein of Bloomberg News; and by Carol Morello of The Washington Post.

  • Adam Floyd