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Trump reportedly defied warning from security team not to congratulate Putin

21 March 2018

The Kremlin says U.S. President Donald Trump has called Russian President Vladimir Putin to congratulate him on re-election.

President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart discussed the possibility of a meeting, the Kremlin's said Tuesday.

Kim Bum-soo has more.

But Trump's defenders were quick to point out that his predecessor, President Barack Obama, had also congratulated Putin after his successful presidential run.

Trump's decision to congratulate Putin on his victory prompted immediate criticism from Russian Federation hawks in Congress like Arizona Sen.

Trump told reporters on Tuesday as he met with Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia that he had congratulated Putin in a call.

Earlier, President Trump announced that he will meet President Putin "in the not too distant future to discuss the arms race, which is getting out of control".

The president said he wants to discuss Syria, Ukraine and North Korea with the Russian leader, as well as what he described as an "arms race" between their two countries.

'I had a call with President Putin and congratulated him on his electoral victory, ' the USA leader said. "The feasibility of continuing consistent efforts to resolve the situation by peaceful, diplomatic means is emphasized", it said.

Mr Trump's decision to ignore his aides' recommendations to avoid congratulating Mr Putin was first reported by the Washington Post newspaper. John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Armed Services Committee, who wrote on Twitter: "An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections".

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A White House spokeswoman said Russia's election interference did not come up during Tuesday's phone call.

Huckabee said, "We don't get to dictate how other countries operate".

The UK government blamed the nerve agent attack on Russian Federation, which denies any involvement.

The notecards are similar to the one Trump was photographed clutching during a White House meeting with students and parents after the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, officials said.

No details were released about the timing or location of a possible meeting with Putin, which would be the third since Trump took office in January 2017.

"It was agreed to develop further bilateral contacts, including taking into account changes in the leadership of the U.S. State Department".

He said: "These are things that all of us should be anxious about". Many others, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, sent congratulatory telegrams.

"This is unacceptable", one White House official told CNN.

Last month, special counsel Robert Mueller indicted 13 Russian individuals and three organizations on charges of interfering in the election.

Trump reportedly defied warning from security team not to congratulate Putin