President Donald Trump said he will enter Monday’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin with “low expectations,” in an interview with CBS Sunday.
Trump told CBS Evening News anchor Jeff Glor he believes there is value meeting with world leaders such as Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un, and that there is little risk to the planned meeting in Helsinki, Finland where they’re expected to discuss relations between the United States and Russia and a range of national security issues.
“I think it’s a good thing to meet. I do believe in meetings. I believe that having a meeting with Chairman Kim was a good thing. I think having meetings with the president of China was a very good thing. I believe it’s really good. So having meetings with Russia, China, North Korea, I believe in it. Nothing bad is going to come out of it, and maybe some good will come out,” Trump said.
Trump’s will meet with Putin days after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced new indictments Friday against 12 Russian intelligence officials, accused in the 2016 hacking of the Democratic National Committee.
When asked about the possibility of requesting the officials be extradited to the United States, Trump said he “might” bring it up during his meeting with Putin.
“I hadn’t thought of that. But I certainly, I’ll be asking about it,” he told Glor. “But again, this was during the Obama administration. They were doing whatever it was during the Obama administration.”
He added the hack of the DNC’s information was a result of the party having a weaker cybersecurity system than the Republican National Convention.
“I think the DNC should be ashamed of themselves for allowing themselves to be hacked. They had bad defenses and they were able to be hacked,” Trump said. “But I heard they were trying to hack the Republicans too. But — and this may be wrong — but they had much stronger defenses.”
Also during the interview, he labeled Russia, the European Union and China as foes to the United States.
“I think we have a lot of foes,” Trump said. “I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now you wouldn’t think of the European Union, but they’re a foe.
“Russia is a foe in certain respects. China is a foe economically, certainly they are a foe. But that doesn’t mean they’re bad. It doesn’t mean anything. It means that they are competitive. They want to do well and we want to do well.”
Also Sunday, British Prime Minister Theresa May revealed a suggestion Trump gave her during their meeting on Friday regarding negotiations with the European Union over Brexit, which the president later said she found too “brutal.”
“He told me I should sue the EU — not go into negotiations,” May told the BBC.
She also noted Trump told her not to walk away from the Brexit negotiations, during their joint press conference.
“‘Don’t walk away from those negotiations because then you’ll be stuck.’ So I want us to be able to sit down to negotiate the best deal for Britain,” May said.
Trump and first lady Melania Trump departed Scotland’s Glasgow Prestwick Airport at about 4:08 p.m. as they made their way to Helsinki, according to pool reports.
Trump posted three tweets on hs upcoming trip and criticized negativity from the media and Democrats.
“Heading to Helsinki, Finland – looking forward to meeting with President Putin tomorrow,” Trump posted. Unfortunately, no matter how well I do at the Summit, if I was given the great city of Moscow as retribution for all of the sins and evils committed by Russia over the years, I would return to criticism that it wasn’t good enough – that I should have gotten Saint Petersburg in addition!
“Much of our news media is indeed the enemy of the people and all the Dems know how to do is resist and obstruct! This is why there is such hatred and dissension in our country – but at some point, it will heal.”
By Daniel Uria