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Putin dismisses G7 criticism as 'babbling', calls for cooperation
11 June 2018, 03:11 | Erica Roy
Donald Trump calls for end to Russian expulsion from G7 grouping
Speaking to reporters in Qingdao, China, Putin said that some nations, including Austria, have offered to host his summit with Trump, should they have one. Even as the scope of the breakdown over USA tariffs became clear, Xi was taking the podium to criticize what he said were new forms of "unilateralism" and "protectionism". "The meeting will take place as soon as the U.S. is ready, though my working schedule must also be taken into consideration", Putin added.
Despite those comments, Putin reportedly said he's willing to meet with Trump, "as soon as the USA side is ready".
According to White House statements, Trump last spoke to Putin on March 20.
The two-day SCO summit comes after US President Donald Trump controversially pulled Washington out of the 2015 worldwide pact with Iran that placed limits on its nuclear programme in return for easing economic sanctions.
"President Putin is the leader of a great country, and is influential around the world", Xi said. "And we also need to hold personal meetings", Putin noted.
In the United States, Trump's comments drew criticism from some fellow Republicans, including Senator John McCain, who slammed Trump for treating Putin with "the deference and esteem that should be reserved for our closest allies". "Colleagues refused to Russian Federation on well-known grounds".
Earlier this year the White House refused to impose sanctions on Russian Federation that were passed into law nearly unanimously last year and was created to punish Moscow's alleged meddling in the 2016 USA election. It was the first violation of a European country's borders since World War II.
A photograph capturing Macron and Trump shaking hands on Friday showed the imprint of the French leader's fingers left on the president's hand, suggesting he gave Trump a particularly forceful grip.
"This leads me to believe that dialogue may prove to be constructive", the Russian leader added.
At the same time he downplayed tensions at the acrimonious G7 meeting in Quebec City, after Trump disowned the joint summit statement and lambasted Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
"The relationship between Russian Federation and China is a friendly, neighborly one, developing.in the spirit of overarching strategic partnership", he said.
"Everyone demonstrated solidarity with London over a certain event in Salisbury but nothing concrete was said again", Putin said.
Putin is in Beijing for a state visit, during which he will attend a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
Putin says Washington's decision to exit the agreement could "destabilize the situation" in the region. He added that Russian Federation will continue to honor the agreement, which offers Iran sanctions relief in exchange for Tehran curbing its nuclear program.
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