Trump to 'get together in the not too distant future' with Putin


Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office, Trump said that the two leaders would probably discuss the "arms race, which is getting out of control".

Incumbent Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures to people at an occasion in Moscow, Russia, on March 18, 2018.

Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona, a frequent Trump critic, called the president's call "odd".

Trump's decision to congratulate Putin on his electoral win drew consternation from McCain who said that "an American president does not lead the free world by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections".

Mueller has reportedly sent questions to the White House for a potential interview with Trump, though Mueller and investigators remain tight-lipped and there is no official date on when Trump might sit with investigators for an interview.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed that Trump spoke with Putin Tuesday morning.

In a statement about the call between the two leaders, the Kremlin described diplomatic problems facing Russian Federation and the US and confirmed Putin's intent to meet with Trump. Russian Federation denies interference in the election.

Trump supposedly ignored the order and called Putin on his own, the Washington Post reported on Tuesday.

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"The leaders spoke out in favor of developing practical cooperation in various spheres including the issues of ensuring strategic stability and the fight against worldwide terrorism", the statement added.

But the two leaders did not discuss Russia's interference in the 2016 U.S. election or the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, the former double agent targeted with a nerve agent in the UK.

"And by doing so with Vladimir Putin, President Trump insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election to determine their country's future, including the countless Russian patriots who have risked so much to protest and resist Putin's regime", McCain added.

"A special attention was given to considering the issue of a possible bilateral summit, " the Kremlin statement said.

The Kremlin said Tuesday's conversation between the two leaders had been broadly constructive and focused on overcoming problems in relations, which are at a post-Cold War low. He has also spoken about the need to avoid another arms race, despite using his pre-election address to showcase new Russian arms. Russian Federation has denied the allegations. They met on the sidelines of an global summit in Germany last summer and again more informally at another gathering of world leaders in Vietnam in November.

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel made customary calls to Putin but voiced their grievances with the Kremlin's current domestic and foreign policies.

Meanwhile, critics laid into Trump earlier this month for his lukewarm response to the nerve-agent attack on former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, both of whom are now on life support.