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Trump says ‘probably’ no Putin meeting in Paris this week

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By Agence France-Presse

US President Donald Trump said Monday he does not expect to hold talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin when they attend World War I commemorations in Paris at the end of this week.

Trump said he was “not sure we’ll have a meeting in Paris — probably not.” However they “will be meeting at the G20” summit in Argentina at the end of November, he said.

Expectations have been growing for a new Trump-Putin meeting as tensions pile up over the Cold War-era Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) and US sanctions against Moscow.

Trump National Security Advisor John Bolton had said during a trip to Moscow in October that the White House wanted a Paris meeting and Putin said he was interested.

Both leaders will be in Paris for the November 11 World War I commemorations, which 60 heads of state and government are expected to attend.

A first bilateral summit took place in Helsinki in July, after which the US president came under strong domestic criticism for adopting a distinctly conciliatory tone despite his own security services’ warning that Russia meddled in US elections.