Published: Mon, November 13, 2017
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Putin calls ravings the claims his relatives connected to United States business

Putin calls ravings the claims his relatives connected to United States business

They both hit back on Sunday - claiming the president is getting "played" by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Trump and Putin also affirmed their commitment to Syria's sovereignty, unity, independence, territorial integrity and non-sectarian character, urging all Syrian parties to actively participate in the Geneva political process and to support efforts to ensure its success.

The American and Russian presidents bumped into each other at a time when a US special counsel and Congress are investigating Russian interference in last year's presidential election, including contacts with Trump campaign associates.

Speaking with reporters later aboard Air Force One, Trump said the Syria statement is "going to save tremendous numbers of lives, and we did it very quickly, we agreed very quickly".

"Every time he sees me he says I didn't do that and I really believe that when he tells me that, he means it, Trump said. And to try paint it in any other way is, I think, astounding, and, in fact, poses a peril to this country".

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said on the same show that the criticism leveled against Trump's management of relations with Russian Federation and China was "ridiculous".

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"There [sic] always playing politics - bad for our country", Trump said.

Part of the answer could be that Trump is easily flattered by foreign leaders if they praise him, as Clapper noted.

On Sunday, Trump revised his initial criticism a bit, saying of the Russian meddling charges: "As to whether I believe it or not, I'm with our agencies, especially as now constituted with their leadership", a phrase that excludes Clapper, Brennan and Comey. Two former top USA intelligence officials said yesterday they fear President Donald Trump is being manipulated by Russian President Vladimir Putin, after Trump said he believed Putin was honest in denying Russian meddling in the 2016 election. "We have to get to work to solve Syria, to solve North Korea, to solve Ukraine, to solve terrorism", he added.

"I know nothing about it".

He added he thought that Putin and he could "have the potential to have a very, very good relationship".

"It's very clear that the Russians interfered in the election and it's still puzzling as to why Mr. Trump does not acknowledge that, embrace it and also push back hard against Mr. Putin", he said.

Xi tells Duterte China will work to safeguard South China Sea peace
The Philippines will be Trump's last stop on a marathon tour that has taken him to Japan, South Korea, China as well as Vietnam. He said that Trump and Xi had discussed ways to "prevent mishaps, misunderstandings and miscalculations" in the vital seaway.

Trump and Putin did not have a formal bilateral meeting, as they did during the G-20 summit in Germany in July; these were informal talks in and around APEC meetings.

"'China likes me", Trump said.

Private "pull-asides" at summit meetings have drawn criticisms of Barack Obama and previous presidents who have engaged in them.

Earlier on Saturday, Trump told the media en route to Hanoi that he and Putin could have a great relationship. "Putin categorically rejected even the hypothetical possibility that Russian Federation could have in some way interfered in the US electoral process".

"The relations between Russian Federation and the U.S. have not come out of the crisis state yet", he said.

"And you know, people don't realize Russian Federation has been very, very heavily sanctioned", he said.

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