Published: Sat, July 28, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

White House bars CNN correspondent from open press event

White House bars CNN correspondent from open press event

Following the backlash in the United States over Trump's cordial public tone with Putin at the Helsinki summit, USA and Russian officials backed away from a proposal to schedule a follow-up summit in Washington.

It is standard protocol for reporters to ask the president questions at such events, and Trump, unlike some of his predecessors, often engages. Collins asked. "Mr. President, are you anxious about what Michael Cohen is going to say to prosecutors?.Why has Vladimir Putin not accepted your invitation, Mr. President?"

"I understand perfectly that President Trump has a desire to hold further meetings, and I am ready to come to Washington if appropriate conditions for work are created".

"We are ready for such meetings".

"We stand in strong solidarity with CNN for the right to full access for our journalists as part of a free and unfettered press", Fox News president Jay Wallace said in a statement Wednesday. The agency quoted Putin as saying "He has, by the way, such an invitation, and I told him about it".

Putin did not say how Trump had reacted to the invitation to travel to Moscow.

"I am ready to go to Washington".

Mr. Putin said he's ready for another meeting.

While Trump was eviscerated in the media for his handling of the Helsinki summit, a recent poll conducted by The Hill found that 54 percent of Americans support a second summit between the two leaders in Washington, and 61 percent say that better relations with Russian Federation are in the best interests of the United States.

The president has been widely criticized for failing to publicly denounce Russia's interference in the 2016 US election and appearing to accept Putin's denials of such activity.

Relations between Russian Federation and the United States have been fraught because of rows over Russia's annexation of Crimea, and allegations - denied by Moscow - that the Kremlin meddled in the 2016 presidential election to help Trump win. Trump has said he wants to improve ties between the two nuclear powers, whose relations have dipped to a post-Cold War low in recent years.

The awkward back and forth is the latest round of summit drama flowing from the two leaders' controversial first meeting in Helsinki this month.

Separately, U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said he was considering the possibility of the first talks in years between the defense chiefs of the United States and Russian Federation.

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