White House: Trump-Putin meeting on hold until 2019 when “Russia witch hunt is over”


President Trump, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin pose for a photograph at the beginning of a one-on-one meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, on Mon., July 16, 2018.


President Donald Trump’s proposed Washington meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin has been delayed until 2019. National security adviser John Bolton, in a statement, cites special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election as the reason for the delay.

Bolton says: “The President believes that the next bilateral meeting with President Putin should take place after the Russia witch hunt is over, so we’ve agreed that it will be after the first of the year.”

The White House said last week that Mr. Trump had directed Bolton to invite Putin to Washington for a meeting in the fall. White House Sarah Huckabee Sanders had confirmed the meeting in a tweet after the summit, saying Mr. Trump had “agreed to ongoing working level dialogue between the two security council staffs.” Sanders said Mr. Trump had asked Bolton to extend the invitation to Putin.

This came amid the backlash over Mr. Trump’s performance at a news conference with Putin following their Helsinki summit, and many members of Congress had objected to them meeting again in the fall.

This is a developing story. 

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